A new poll shows South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg surging in a second early state. The out presidential candidate comes in at third place in a Saint Anselm College Survey Center poll of New Hampshire voters.
The survey found that among Democrats, Buttigieg is now the preferred candidate of 10.7 percent of registered voters in the Granite State. That still puts him behind former Vice President Joe Biden (22.9 percent) and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (15.6 percent). He comes in ahead of Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (8.7 percent) and California Sen. Kamala Harris (6.8 percent).
About 13.2 percent answered “No Opinion.”
“The emerging dark horse in this race may be Pete Buttigieg, who has gone from a virtual unknown to vault to 11 percent support, trailing only Biden and Sanders and ahead of Warren,” said New Hampshire Institute of Politics Executive Director Neil Levesque.
“His emergence as a factor is driven by a 33-point increase in name recognition, almost all of it favorable. He even carries a slight 16-14 lead over Sanders in vote-rich Merrimack Valley.”
The poll also tested name ID favorability ratings among candidates and found Buttigieg making massive gains there. Among those surveyed, 42.3 percent hold a favorable view of Buttigieg, and just 5.5 percent held an unfavorable view, the lowest unfavorable among any of the 14 candidates in the survey. About 69.9 percent of voters knew of Buttigieg.
Levesque still pegs the New Hamshire race as a battle between “two familiar faces that represent different wings of the Democratic Party.”
But its striking that the Midwesterner beats a New Englander like Warren.
Sanders won New Hampshire in 2016 on the way to losing the Democratic nomination to Hillary Clinton.
This isn’t the only early primary state where Buttigieg shows strength. An Emerson Polling survey released in March showed Buttigieg in third place in Iowa.
The Democratic race formally kicks off with Iowa caucuses on Feb. 3, 2020. New Hampshire holds the first primary of the 2020 cycle on Feb. 11.