PORTSMOUTH, New Hampshire – Bernie Sanders maintains a significant double-digit lead over Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, according to an NBC News/Wall Street/Marist poll conducted after Clinton’s narrow apparent win in Monday’s Iowa caucuses.
Sanders gets the support of 58 percent of likely Democratic primary voters, while Clinton gets 38 percent – essentially unchanged from a last week’s NBC/WSJ/Marist poll, which showed Sanders ahead by a 57 percent-to-38 percent margin in the Granite State.
“So far in New Hampshire, it’s all Sanders as Clinton faces an uphill fight,” says pollster Lee Miringoff. director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.
The new poll numbers come out before Thursday night’s debate on MSNBC – the first one-on-one encounter between Clinton and Sanders. (Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley dropped out of the contest on Monday.)
Both campaigns have been competing to manage expectations for Tuesday’s contest: Clinton has played up Sanders hailing from nearby Vermont, while Sanders has emphasized Clinton’s victory over Barack Obama in the 2008 New Hampshire primary.
Not only does Sanders lead Clinton by 20 points among likely Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire, he also leads her among independents (69 percent to 26 percent), men (70 percent to 25 percent) and those ages 18-29 (76 percent to 24 percent). Sanders also is ahead of Clinton in New Hampshire among groups with which the former secretary of state typically performs well – Democrats (51 percent to 46 percent) and women (50 percent to 46 percent).
Clinton does have an advantage over Sander among likely Democratic primary voters ages 60 and older, 51 percent to 44 percent.
The NBC/WSJ/Marist poll was conducted Feb. 2-3 of 567 likely Democratic primary voters, which has a margin of error of plus-minus 4.1 percentage points. Poll numbers on the Republican side will be released Friday morning.