The battle for third place among Democratic presidential candidates is heating up after a stellar showing during the debates. California Sen. Kamala Harris is now tied for third with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) behind former Vice President Joe Biden and America’s favorite H&R Block tax consultant, Bernie Sanders.
After the debates, in which Harris handed Biden his hat and coat and then showed him the door, Harris’ vote totals for president have doubled among Democratic primary voters, according to new polls that chart this kind of activity.
The latest Morning Consult survey found Harris increased her standing to 12 percent in the poll, which was taken after the debate ended through Friday, up 6 percentage points over the previous week. Harris’ upswing came after she confronted Joe Biden over his history opposing school busing for desegregation, a dramatic moment that dominated news coverage afterward.
Harris hadn’t moved much since entering the race on Martin Luther King Jr. Day — while two rival Democrats, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Elizabeth Warren passed Harris. After the debate, Harris pulled ahead of Buttigieg and into a tie with Warren.
Harris’ surge, which also netted her more than $2.5 million in donations as the second-quarter deadline approaches, came largely at Biden’s expense, the poll found. The former vice president, who maintains a large lead over the field at 33 percent, took the biggest post-debate hit, dropping 5 points after the Miami exchange over race and busing to end desegregation.
Despite a relatively blah showing, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) was still in second despite a considerable drop in his favorability, “which fell 7 points, to 67 percentage, since the previous Morning Consult survey,” Politico reports.