U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton waves as she is announced on the stage during Jim Clyburn's Annual Fish Fry in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 16, 2016.
Photo by Chris Keane/Reuters

Poll: Clinton holds 25-point national lead over Sanders


Hillary Clinton leads rival Bernie Sanders by 25 points nationally ahead of Sunday’s final Democratic debate and the all-important Iowa caucuses, according to the latest results from the new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

The debate will air on NBC at 9:00 pm ET.

Clinton is the first choice of 59 percent of Democratic primary voters, while Sanders gets the support of 34 percent. Martin O’Malley gets 2 percent.

RELATED: How to watch Sunday’s Democratic debate

Those numbers don’t differ greatly from December, when the poll showed Clinton with a 19-point national advantage over Sanders, 56 percent to 37 percent.

But Clinton’s current 25-point lead contrasts with other recent national polling, including a New York Times/CBS survey, which found Clinton with just a seven-point advantage.

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The NBC/WSJ poll screens out Democratic and Republican voters who aren’t expected to participate in the presidential primaries and caucuses.

The new poll also finds 79 percent of Democratic primary voters saying that they could see themselves supporting Clinton, versus 18 percent who couldn’t (+61) — essentially unchanged from December’s 82 percent-to-17 percent score (+65).

By comparison, 66 percent of Democratic primary voters say they could see themselves supporting Sanders, versus 25 percent who couldn’t (+41), and O’Malley has a 22 percent-to-51 percent score (-29).

RELATED: Sanders: Clinton ‘getting defensive’ as polls tighten

Despite Clinton’s lead over Sanders, the Vermont senator bests Clinton among the four-in-10 Democratic voters who prefer a presidential candidate who brings change to current policies,63 percent to 26 percent.

Yet among the more than half of Democrats who instead want experience and a tested candidate, Clinton beats Sanders, 71 percent to 30 percent.

Overall, 61 percent of all voters — Democratic, Republican and independent — want change, while 36 percent prefer experience.

The NBC/WSJ poll was conducted Jan. 9-13, and the margin of error of the 400 Democratic primary voters surveyed is plus-minus 4.9 percentage points.

This article first appeared on NBCNews.com.