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With Two Days to Go Until Primary, New Polling Finds N.H. Voters See Sanders as Most Electable Against Trump

"This seems like a pretty big deal."

Democratic presidential hopeful Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders raises his fist as he addresses the Democratic Party's 61st Annual McIntyre-Shaheen 100 Club dinner at SNHU arena in Manchester, New Hampshire, on February 8, 2020. (Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)

New polling out of New Hampshire showed voters in the state, who will go to polls on Tuesday in the Democratic primary, believe Sen. Bernie Sanders has the best chance of beating President Donald Trump in the general election.

The CNN survey was taken by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center between February 4 and 7, just after the Vermont senator garnered more votes than any other candidate in the Iowa caucuses. 

Out of 715 adults surveyed, 29% of voters in the state said they believed Sanders could win in November, compared with 25% for former Vice President Joe Biden and 14% for former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

"This seems like a pretty big deal," tweeted journalist Krystal Ball.

In the primary, Sanders was favored by 28% of voters in the poll, versus 21% who supported Buttigieg. Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) had 11% and 9% of the vote, respectively. Another poll released Sunday by the Boston Globe, WBZ-TV, and Suffolk University showed Sanders leading Buttigieg in New Hampshire by two percentage points but placed both candidates in a statistical tie with the poll's margin of error.

The surveys were released on the heels of the McIntyre-Shaheen 100 Club Dinner in Manchester, N.H., where supporters of Sanders reiterated their support for Medicare for All and slammed Buttigieg for his alignment with Wall Street interests.

Sanders supporters rejected the former mayor's statement that the demand for a nominee supported by a grassroots movement rather than one backed by corporate interests is "divisive."

A large group of Sanders supporters shouted their disapproval and chanted, "Wall Street Pete" as Buttigieg criticized the notion that a candidate "must either be for a revolution or for the status quo."

At a campaign event at St. Anselm College in Goffstown, New Hampshire Friday, Sanders refrained from commenting on the mayor personally but questioned his ability to change the U.S. political and economic systems considering his financial ties to Big Pharma and other powerful corporate sectors.

"I like Pete Buttigieg, nice guy, but we are in a moment where billionaires control not only our economy but our political process," Sanders said. "Do you think if you're collecting money from dozens of dozens of billionaires you're going to stand up to the drug companies and you're going to throw their CEOs in jail if they're acting criminally?"

Organizers for the Sanders campaign reported high numbers of canvassers arriving at field offices throughout the state over the weekend to help campaign, as some on-the-ground observers warned Buttigieg appeared to have gained support following the Iowa caucuses, in which he won two more State Delegate Equivalents and one more delegate than the senator, but won fewer votes from caucusgoers.

"If we can't know for sure" whether Sanders will win the primary Tuesday, tweeted Jacobin writer and supporter Meagan Day, "we have to fight like everything's on the line!"

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