Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton is maintaining her commanding lead but most of her supporters would be comfortable if Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders got the nomination, a new poll has found.
According to a Monmouth University poll
conducted July 30-Aug. 2 of 1,203 adults, Clinton has 52 percent support among Democrats and Democrat-leaning voters. Sanders trails her with just 16 percent support.
Among the party's other possible candidates:
- Vice President Joe Biden would get 12 percent;
- Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb each have 2 percent support;
- Former Rhode Island Gov. and Sen. Lincoln Chafee registers no support.
Assuming Biden does not enter the race, most Democrats say they would not mind if Sanders got the nomination, including 17 percent who would be enthusiastic about the prospect and 39 percent who would be satisfied.
Just 16 percent would be dissatisfied and 7 percent would be upset with a Sanders victory.
Twenty-two percent have no opinion, the poll reports.
Even among those who support Clinton, half would either be enthusiastic (7 percent) or satisfied (43 percent) with Sanders carrying the torch, while just three-in-10 would be dissatisfied (18 percent) or upset (12 percent).
"Clinton continues to be the odds-on favorite for the Democratic nomination, but Democrats don't have a particularly strong attachment to seeing her become their nominee," Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a statement.
The poll also found that the vast majority of Democrats, or 71 percent, view Clinton favorably compared to just 17 percent who have an unfavorable view. However, her favorability has gradually declined over recent months: It was 82 percent in December.
By contrast, Bernie Sanders' favorability rating has grown significantly since December. He has a 42 percent favorable rating compared to 12 percent unfavorable. In December, 22 percent viewed him positively compared to 13 percent who viewed him negatively.
However, large percentages of Democrats (45 percent) have no opinion of him, the poll found.
A Gallup Poll out last month
showed that Sanders' favorability rating had doubled since March.
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