Floundering Biden Loses His Lead in Polling Average for the First Time

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In statistical terms, two-tenths of a percentage point is pretty meaningless.

But in the race for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, the slim lead that Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has over former Vice President Joe Biden — at least for one day — is fraught with meaning for Biden’s troubled candidacy.

On Wednesday, the Real Clear Politics average of polls showed, for the first time in the campaign, Warren outpolling Biden with an average of 26.6 percent support to Biden’s 26.4 percent. The two candidates had been a fraction of a point apart since Monday, when Biden led by three-tenths of a percentage point, 26.3 to 26.0.

The recent poll is a vast change from May 10, when Biden was polling at 41.4 percent and Warren was at 8 percent in a very distant third place. Even a month ago, Biden had 29.7 percent support while Warren was at 18 percent.

Biden was the front-runner in virtually every poll taken for the past year until mid-September, when Warren began to emerge as the winner in many of the polls that were taken. The increase in Warren’s poll numbers came not long after the Sept. 12 Democratic presidential debate.

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For the past two weeks, Biden’s campaign has been on the defensive regarding the former vice president’s role in Ukraine. In 2016, Biden was among those pressuring Ukraine to dismiss a prosecutor who had been targeting the Ukrainian energy company Burisma, which employed his son, Hunter.

Biden’s attempts to deal with the issue were excoriated by liberal filmmaker Michael Moore during a recent appearance on MSNBC.

“Joe Biden is this year’s Hillary,” Moore said, referencing the failed campaign of 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. “Joe Biden is not going to excite the base to get out there and vote on Nov. 3, 2020.”

“The things that he said publicly are very strong, but it looks like he’s not really wanting to deal with it. He’s afraid to be out there,” the filmmaker said.

Do you think Sen. Elizabeth Warren will be the Democrats’ 2020 nominee?

“There’s some piece of this that he doesn’t want to deal with in terms of his son and the gas company and all that. And it’s OK. It’s been proven that nobody did anything wrong. If he’s embarrassed that the kid of a politician got some help, well, I don’t think anybody sitting there at home right now with their TV dinner going, ‘What? Joe Biden’s son got a good job out of this?’” Moore said.

The filmmaker said Biden appears too laid-back.

“He said the right thing, but he’s got to come out fighting,” Moore said. “You don’t want a [Michael] Dukakis moment here when they attack your family and you’re trying to be all kumbaya about this. You’ve got to put the gloves on and you’ve got to go after him. And Biden should be out there every single day on this. Don’t be afraid. It’s OK, your son got a good job.”

Meanwhile, Warren has been gaining.

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A poll released Tuesday by Quinnipiac University showed Warren with a three-point lead over Biden, 29 percent to 26 percent. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont placed third at 16 percent.

“Warren maintains her strength in the Democratic primary, which has been consistently growing since the start of her campaign,” Quinnipiac polling analyst Tim Malloy said. “This poll confirms her status as a co-frontrunner with Biden.”

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

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'SMSX' : 'LGSX'; let factor = 1.0; if( typeof FFADS.units[bid.adUnitCode].scales[screen_size][bid.bidderCode] != 'undefined' ){ factor -= FFADS.units[bid.adUnitCode].scales[screen_size][bid.bidderCode]; FFADS.debug( 'factor for ' + bid.bidderCode + ' in ' + bid.adUnitCode + ' set to ' + factor + '; bid changed from ' + bidCpm + ' to ' + ( bidCpm *= factor ) ); } return bidCpm; } } }; pbjs.que.push(function() { pbjs.enableAnalytics( { provider: 'roxot', options: { publisherIds: ["556182c7-ac68-4d56-8c66-4b4336e28e5e"] } } ); pbjs.setConfig( { priceGranularity: "high", userSync: { iframeEnabled: true, filterSettings: { iframe: { bidders: ['openx', 'pubmatic'], filter: 'include' } } } } ); FFADS.debug( 'adding units to PB' ); FFADS.debug( FFADS.pb_units ); pbjs.addAdUnits( FFADS.pb_units ); let adUnitCodes = []; for( let ad_unit in FFADS.units ) if( ! FFADS.units[ad_unit].lazy_load ) adUnitCodes.push( ad_unit ); FFADS.debug( 'requesting PB bids for initial units' ); pbjs.requestBids({ bidsBackHandler: FFADS.pbjs_bids_back, adUnitCodes: adUnitCodes }); }); function sendInitialAdserverRequest() { if( FFADS.initialAdserverRequestSent ) return; FFADS.initialAdserverRequestSent = true; FFADS.debug( 'queuing DFP request for initial units' ); googletag.cmd.push(function() { pbjs.que.push(function() { FFADS.debug( 'sending DFP request for initial units' ); let adUnitCodes = []; let dfpAdUnits = []; for( let ad_unit in FFADS.units ) if( ! FFADS.units[ad_unit].lazy_load ) { if( FFADS.units[ad_unit].ad_type == 'hybrid' ) { let pb_bid = pbjs.getHighestCpmBids( ad_unit ); pb_bid = pb_bid.length ? pb_bid[0].cpm : 0; FFADS.debug( 'Prebid bid ' + pb_bid + ' for ' + ad_unit ); if( pb_bid < FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].cpm ) { FFADS.debug( 'Custom code won for ' + ad_unit ); let el = false; if( el = document.getElementById( ad_unit ) ) { el.innerHTML = FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].code; eval( FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].rendering_script ); } else FFADS.debug( 'failed to render custom code in ' + ad_unit + ' since the unit is not on this page' ); continue; } } adUnitCodes.push( ad_unit ); dfpAdUnits.push( FFADS.units[ad_unit].instances[ad_unit].gt_slot ); } pbjs.setTargetingForGPTAsync( adUnitCodes ); apstag.setDisplayBids(); googletag.pubads().refresh( dfpAdUnits ); }); }); } FFADS.debug( 'scheduling DFP request for initial units' ); setTimeout( function() { sendInitialAdserverRequest(); }, FFADS.prebid_timeout ); (function () { var gads = document.createElement('script'); gads.async = true; gads.type = 'text/javascript'; var useSSL = 'https:' == document.location.protocol; gads.src = (useSSL ? 'https:' : 'http:') + '//www.googletagservices.com/tag/js/gpt.js'; var node = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; node.parentNode.insertBefore(gads, node); })(); var googletag = googletag || {}; googletag.cmd = googletag.cmd || [ function() { FFADS.debug( 'googletag.cmd starting' ); } ]; googletag.cmd.push( function() { googletag.pubads().disableInitialLoad(); for( let ad_unit in FFADS.units ) if( ! FFADS.units[ad_unit].lazy_load && ( FFADS.units[ad_unit].ad_type == 'dfp_prebid' || FFADS.units[ad_unit].ad_type == 'hybrid' ) ) { FFADS.debug( 'defining slot for ' + ad_unit + ' #' + ad_unit ); FFADS.units[ad_unit].instances[ad_unit].gt_slot = googletag.defineSlot( FFADS.get_unit_path( ad_unit ), FFADS.units[ad_unit].sizes, ad_unit ).addService( googletag.pubads() ); } googletag.pubads().enableSingleRequest(); firefly_setTargeting(); googletag.pubads().setCentering(true); googletag.enableServices(); } ); let advelvet_unit_list = []; for( let ad_unit in FFADS.units ) advelvet_unit_list.push( { path: FFADS.get_unit_path( ad_unit ), sizes: FFADS.units[ad_unit].sizes } ); googletag.cmd.push(function () { googletag.pubads().setTargeting("advelvet", (Math.floor(Math.random() * 20) + 1) + ""); }); var deviceDetect = function () { if ((/ipad|android 3.0|xoom|sch-i800|playbook|tablet|kindle/i.test(navigator.userAgent.toLowerCase()))) return 3;//tablet if ((/iphone|ipod|android|blackberry|opera|mini|windowssce|palm|smartphone|iemobile/i.test(navigator.userAgent.toLowerCase()))) return 1; //mobile return 2;//desktop }; var asyncLoad = function (url) { var script = document.createElement('script'); script.async = true; script.type = 'text/javascript'; script.src = url; var node = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; node.parentNode.insertBefore(script, node); }; var advelvet = { timeout: 800, adUnits: advelvet_unit_list, device: deviceDetect(), companyKey: "5a30fceb7021eC", companyId: "liftablemedia" }; advelvet.refresh = function () { googletag.pubads().setTargeting("ade","TOUT"); }; var advelvetRefresh = function () { if (advelvet.released) { return; } advelvet.released = true; googletag.cmd.push(function () { advelvet.refresh(); }); }; function addSize(screen, size) { return {'screen': screen, 'sizes': size}; } var scriptUrl = (('https:' == document.location.protocol) ? 'https:' : 'http:') + '//advelvet-' + advelvet.companyId + '.global.ssl.fastly.net/v201?data=' + encodeURIComponent(JSON.stringify({ device: advelvet.device, adUnits: advelvet.adUnits, companyKey: advelvet.companyKey })); asyncLoad(scriptUrl); function sendSingleAdserverRequest( ad_unit, div_id = false ) { div_id = div_id || ad_unit; if( FFADS.units[ad_unit].instances[div_id].adserverRequestSent ) return; FFADS.units[ad_unit].instances[div_id].adserverRequestSent = true; if( FFADS.units[ad_unit].ad_type == 'hybrid' ) { let pb_bid = pbjs.getHighestCpmBids( div_id ); pb_bid = pb_bid.length ? pb_bid[0].cpm : 0; FFADS.debug( 'Prebid bid ' + pb_bid + ' for #' + div_id ); if( pb_bid < FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].cpm ) { FFADS.debug( 'Custom code won for #' + div_id ); document.getElementById( div_id ).innerHTML = FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].code; eval( FFADS.units[ad_unit].custom_ads[0].rendering_script ); return; } } apstag.setDisplayBids(); pbjs.setTargetingForGPTAsync( [div_id] ); FFADS.debug( 'sending DFP request for ' + ad_unit + ' #' + div_id ); googletag.pubads().refresh( [FFADS.units[ad_unit].instances[div_id].gt_slot] ); } function firefly_pbjs_bids_back_single( ad_unit, div_id = false ) { div_id = div_id || ad_unit; FFADS.debug( 'PB bids back for ' + ad_unit + ' #' + div_id ); window['firefly_pbjs_ready' + ad_unit] = true; if( window['firefly_a9_ready' + ad_unit] ) return sendSingleAdserverRequest( ad_unit, div_id ); } function firefly_a9_bids_back_single( ad_unit, div_id = false ) { div_id = div_id || ad_unit; FFADS.debug( 'A9 bids back for ' + ad_unit + ' #' + div_id ); window['firefly_a9_ready' + ad_unit] = true; if( window['firefly_pbjs_ready' + ad_unit] ) return sendSingleAdserverRequest( ad_unit, div_id ); } !function(a9,a,p,s,t,A,g){if(a[a9])return;function q(c,r){a[a9]._Q.push([c,r])}a[a9]={init:function(){q("i",arguments)},fetchBids:function(){q("f",arguments)},setDisplayBids:function(){},targetingKeys:function(){return[]},_Q:[]};A=p.createElement(s);A.async=!0;A.src=t;g=p.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];g.parentNode.insertBefore(A,g)}("apstag",window,document,"script","//c.amazon-adsystem.com/aax2/apstag.js"); apstag.init({ pubID: 'da224ee9-07c8-4a80-87e4-528df4ac939e', adServer: 'googletag', bidTimeout: FFADS.prebid_timeout }); var a9_slot_arr = []; for( var ad_unit in FFADS.units ) { if( ! FFADS.units[ad_unit].lazy_load ) var a9_slot_arr = a9_slot_arr.concat( [ { slotID: ad_unit, slotName: FFADS.get_unit_path( ad_unit ), sizes: FFADS.units[ad_unit].sizes } ] ); }; FFADS.debug( 'requesting A9 bids for initial units' ); apstag.fetchBids( { slots: a9_slot_arr }, function( bids ) { FFADS.debug( 'A9 bids back for initial units' ); FFADS.a9_ready = true; if( FFADS.pbjs_ready ) return sendInitialAdserverRequest(); } );

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