The long-presumed Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is trailing Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by 7 percentage points in the latest survey of New Hampshire, a Boston Herald and Franklin Pierce University poll
Sanders leads Clinton 44 percent to 37 percent, and Joe Biden follows with 9 percent support, even though he has yet to announce his candidacy.
All other candidates — former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee and former Virginia Gov. Jim Webb — received 1 percent or less in the poll.
The poll surveyed 44 Democratic primary voters Aug. 7 in the Granite State and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.7 percent.
The results indicate the former secretary of state "faces an unexpectedly difficult fight to prevent an embarrassing opening loss in the first-in-the-nation primary," according to the Herald, which notes that the poll "shows that most New Hampshire Democrats are lukewarm to Clinton, despite her campaign’s concerted effort to soften her image and connect with voters."
Additionally, only 35 percent of likely primary voters reported being "excited" about Clinton’s campaign, according to the Herald, and while "51 percent of voters say that while they could support her, they aren’t enthusiastic about her White House bid."
In the same poll in March, Sanders, a self-described socialist who is a registered independent and caucuses with the Democrats, trailed Clinton by a 44-8 margin.
A recent Public Policy Polling survey
found that Sanders' popularity is also on the rise in Iowa, where since April support for Clinton has dropped from 62 percent to 52 percent while Sanders' support has risen to 25 percent from 14 percent, something that the poll characterizes as "a decent amount of tightening."
Clinton’s diminishing poll numbers coincide with revelations that the nation's former top diplomat exclusively used a private server and email account, housed in her New York home, for official government business. The FBI is conducting a criminal inquiry
, according to reports.
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