Joe Biden is overwhelming favourite among black voters, poll finds

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On Thursday morning, just Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren had met polling and fundraising requirements to participate in Tuesday's Democratic debate in Iowa.

Steyer's spending on television advertising nationwide has already surpassed $100 million, according to figures posted by CNN, eclipsing that of Biden, Buttigieg, Sanders and Warren combined.

While the poll offers no front-runner, it does provide additional insight to where voters are shifting, with good news for Sanders and warning signs for Biden.

In Michigan in 2016, Trump defeated Hillary Clinton by roughly 10,000 voters, or 0.25 percent of all ballots cast. Buttigieg experienced the biggest drop in support compared to the same poll conducted in November, losing 9 percentage points. Cory Booker at 4%, and businessman Andrew Yang at 3%.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and author Marianne Williamson, meanwhile, received zero per cent of votes because they were not picked as a first choice for president by even one poll respondent. "He leads, but it's not an uncontested lead", pollster J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll, told the Des Moines Register. But Selzer added that poll numbers also suggested that Sanders' "got a firmer grip on his supporters than the rest of his compatriots".

The statements came after Sanders condemned the airstrike that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on January 3.

Even if Biden does not win in predominantly white Iowa on February 3 or New Hampshire on February 11 - the states with the first two nominating contests - he is expected to make up the ground once the race moves onto Nevada, then SC on February 29 and the 14 states holding contests on Super Tuesday on March 3, according to his advisers.

Finishing among the top three in Iowa has been crucial for candidates seeking their party's nomination in past presidential races, with those who fail to do so often finding their campaigns ending before voters in New Hampshire head to the polls for the second nominating contest. The margin of error of +/- 3.7 percent indicates an extremely tight race among the top tier of candidates.

Candidates were eagerly awaiting the release of the Iowa poll, which will factor heavily into their strategies to win over and turn out voters in the final stretch.

But Biden regains a sharp advantage in the 35 to 49 age group (41%-16%), and among voters older than 65 there is no contest: Biden enjoys 68% popularity, with second-placed Sanders floundering at 8%. A Des Moines Register/CNN poll had Sanders edging ahead.

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