Biden bounces back

By Zach Montellaro
A new Fox News survey shows the former vice president at pre-debate levels, with more than double the support of the second-place candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Joe Biden is leading in a new Fox News national survey of the Democratic presidential primary, holding on to a steady lead from a pre-debate poll in the latest piece of good polling news for the former vice president after faltering in the first debate.

The former vice president leads the field with 33 percent, the poll shows. He’s followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders’ 15 percent, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s 12 percent and Sen. Kamala Harris’ 10 percent.

The top four’s positioning was stable from the last Fox News national poll, which was taken in mid-June, before the first Democratic presidential primary debate. All four of the top candidates saw slight changes in their numbers — Biden's support ticked up 1 point from 32 percent in the previous survey — but all of the changes were within the poll’s margin of error.

Rounding out the middle tier of candidates is South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who has 5 percent. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Andrew Yang each have 3 percent. Sen. Cory Booker, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke are each at 2 percent, the last candidates above that mark.

Twenty candidates will meet next week for the second Democratic primary debate. Sanders and Warren will headline the Tuesday night debate, while Biden and Harris will lead Wednesday's.

The poll brought good news for both Yang and Hickenlooper, because it counted for both candidates as a qualifying poll for the third debate in September. Candidates need 2 percent in four Democratic National Committee-approved polls and 130,000 unique donors to make it up on stage for the first fall debate.

Biden, Sanders, Warren, Harris, Buttigieg and O’Rourke has already qualified. Booker and Klobuchar had previously hit the polling threshold, but neither has publicly said they have 130,000 donors.

In a fundraising email sent on Thursday afternoon, Booker told supporters he needed just 5,000 more donors to cross the 130,000 mark. Yang has previously hit the donor mark.

The Fox News survey was the second debate-qualifying poll released Thursday to show Biden well ahead of the field. A Monmouth University poll in South Carolina had the former vice president well ahead of the field, buoyed by black voters, who comprise a majority of the electorate in the state.

Immediately after the first debate last month, Biden's support slipped in a number of polls below 30 percent. But the Fox News poll, which was conducted weeks after those post-debate polls, did not show a drop for Biden.

The Fox News poll surveyed 455 registered voters who said they were likely to vote in the Democratic primary in their state. It was in the field from July 21-23 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.