Poll: 14 Percent of Sanders Backers Won’t Back Biden

Suffolk University/USA TODAY survey shows 38 percent of Sanders voters enthused about Biden

Fourteen percent of voters who previously supported Sen. Bernie Sanders say they don’t intend to shift to former Vice-President Joe Biden in the November election, according to a Suffolk University/USA TODAY survey. Among those who voted for Sanders in primaries or caucuses, 77 percent said they will vote for Biden, while 4 percent said they will vote for President Donald Trump, 8 percent said they will choose a third-party candidate, 2 percent will not vote for a presidential candidate, and 8 percent are undecided.

Sixty-one percent of these Sander supporters say they are not excited about voting for Biden, while 38 percent said they are either somewhat or very excited to vote for the presumptive Democratic nominee.

When asked about their priorities, 57 percent of Sanders’ supporters said that defeating Trump is more important than standing up for progressive policies like the Green New Deal and Medicare for All, while 34 percent said those policy proposals are more important to them. Eighty-two percent were aware that Sanders had endorsed Biden.

“For now, Joe Biden is sitting pretty with a statistically significant lead over Donald Trump,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. “But if too many unenthusiastic Sanders voters decide to stick to their progressive principles and walk away from the table, it might be Donald Trump sitting pretty again—in the Oval Office.”


This survey of 638 Bernie Sanders voters was conducted between April 18 and April 25 and is based on live telephone interviews of previously identified Sanders voters from Suffolk University/USA TODAY 2019 national and 2020 state polls. The subset of state polls included respondents voting for Bernie Sanders in the Iowa caucus, New Hampshire primary, Nevada caucus, and Massachusetts, Utah, and California Democratic primaries. Results are posted on the Suffolk University Political Research Center website. For more information, contact David Paleologos at 781-290-9310, [email protected].

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