40% of PA Democrats are already backing Clinton for the nomination, leaving Bernie Sanders – at 22% – with a mountain to climb before April’s primary, according to a recent PPP Poll.
All is not lost for the Vermont Senator though, as PA’s Democratic Party will award its 117 delegates proportionally to the popular vote.
Vice President Joe Biden places third in the poll – as he continues to ponder a third presidential run – with 20%. Former RI Senator and Gov. Lincoln Chafee outperformed former MD Gov. Martin O’Malley and former VA Sen. Jim Webb by picking up 3% support in the Keystone State.
Lawrence Lessig also topped Webb, having stepped away from Harvard Law School in September to run on a platform of campaign finance and electoral reform legislation.
Biden jumping into the race would help Sanders enormously, as 39% of Biden supporters have Clinton as their second choice. Only 18% of PA Dems would switch their vote from Biden to Sanders, according to the poll. After reallocating Biden’s votes, Clinton leads Sanders 48-26, down from 63-14 in May.
Clinton also stands to pick up many of the voters switching from other candidates once they drop out, according to the poll.
Surprisingly, Clinton does better among “very liberal” and “somewhat liberal” Democrats than Sanders, leading 48-35% and 42-20% respectively.
Though Clinton has been dealing with favorability and trust issues with voters across the country, 61% of Democrats surveyed said they see Clinton in a positive light. The VP was the most popular, racking up a 70% favorability rating, while Sanders will look to get his rating up from 47% over the next six months.
Public Policy Polling surveyed 416 Democratic primary voters from October 8th to 11th. The margin of error is +/-4.8%.