Labor Day has historically been a reset point for Presidential campaigns as the end of Summer marks the end of vacations and always means more voters paying attention to the race. Here’s a quick look at the race as we head into September, a crucial month for every candidate and the point at which most campaigns take a “reset” to assess their messaging and plot their path into the Fall.

Questionable Monmouth Poll

There was a poll out earlier this week which appeared to show the candidacy of former vice president Joe Biden in a literal freefall. The numbers, coming from a Monmouth University poll, showed Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders tied nationally at 20%, with Biden sitting behind them at 19%. At first, the poll sent some shockwaves through various media outlets, but upon further analysis, Monmouth University called the numbers an outlier compared to their previous polls, according to CNN:

Monmouth University’s poll showing a three-way tie between former Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders atop the 2020 Democratic field for president was an outlier, the university’s polling director said Wednesday.

“[I]t is clear that the Monmouth University Poll published Monday is an outlier,” polling director Patrick Murray said in a statement. “I understood when we released our poll that the picture it painted diverged from others.”

The sample size was tiny for a national poll, and the pollster issued a lengthier statement on twitter attempting to explain their error:

When I personally saw the poll released, I was skeptical somewhat and stayed away from reporting on it until it was either disproved or supported by more data. Luckily this time the former happened and Monmouth took responsibility for putting out bogus numbers.

More polls from other firms showed the race hasn’t changed much into August:

Quinnipiac University’s poll, released early Wednesday, found Biden leading the pack with 32% support among registered Democrats and Democratic independent voters. Warren and Sanders followed with 19% and 15%, respectively, relatively unchanged from Quinnipiac’s earlier August poll.

A CNN poll conducted by SSRS released last week with Biden at 29% support among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents, followed by 15% for Sanders and 14% for Warren.

Biden appears to be holding down his thirty percent support as it has been for many months. Part of the reason is that he holds a strong majority of black voters within the Democratic primary. Biden’s still in charge, for now.

Labor Day Campaign Reset

After Labor Day, more Americans will be paying much closer attention to the 2020 presidential campaign. The September 12 debate will, for some viewers, be the first time they take a serious look at the Democratic field and begin to form stronger opinions. The prior debates were watched by millions of viewers, sure, but being so early in the process, many voters were still keeping their minds open.

Most polls show the race down to a Biden-Warren-Sanders battle for the majority of voters right now. That dynamic will continue into September, and it could even solidify further after the next debate. If Biden’s numbers continue to hold, and Warren consolidates more progressives, it’s plausible the race could tighten further into a two-person race depending on how well Bernie performs on stage in September.

We’re entering campaign crazy season when the low-digit candidates must pull out the stops and give it one last-ditch effort to make an impact on the race before their fundraising runs out. We will resume reporting after Labor Day and get back into campaign coverage with the upcoming debate. Things are about to get much more interesting in the Democratic primary very, very soon.


  1. You’re lieing through your teeth Nate and clearly have an agenda with this piece.
    Monmouth only said that they acknowledged the poll results were an “outlier” from previous polls conducted by them.
    That is VERY different than Monmouth saying that the results were “bogus” or that they “disavowed” the poll. Those are YOUR words.

  2. Biden is his own worst enemy. If he gets a brain transplant he’ll be the Dems nominee. And even if he doesn’t he’ll probably be the nominee without Obama’s help.

    • It is amazing that people overlook Biden’s flubs. But I think maybe they think it shows he’s “human.” It may actually be an important part of his appeal to many people–in the same way that everybody loved Yogi Berra (so much so that he had the cartoon character named after him).

      That brings us to the “who’d you rather have a beer with?” W beat Gore, because Gore came off as a robot. Clinton beat GHW because Clinton seemed like a “good ol’ boy,” despite the faults everyone knew.

      It could well be that Biden might do well against Trump because of his “nice guy” personality. Nobody ever accused Trump of being a “nice guy.” This is an angle that is not being explored.

      • Very true. Plus the press continues to say “Well that’s just Joe.” They’ll protect Joe no matter how bad he blunders.

        The press would beg for the 25th amendment to be used if Trump had Joe’s gaffes. Joe’s biggest gaffe, stupidity for me, was when he asked the man in a wheelchair to stand. That wasn’t even remotely right. Trump’s remarks pale in comparison to Joe’s ignorance.

        I’d love to have a beer with Trump. I’d cringe having a beer with Biden. Why cringe? Because Joe’s goal is to screw as many Americans as he can. Why? Anybody who says “Come on man China isn’t so bad” either doesn’t have a clue about China or doesn’t care about America.

    • It’s an old quote from Mark Twain. Someone wrote that he had died, but instead of saying, simply, “no,” Twain said that his demise had been exaggerated, as if dying were not a yes-or-no question. The idea of the article is that Biden took a dip in one or two polls and commentators were saying that was the end of him. But other polls showed him maintaining his lead.

      • I understood the idea and now learning from you about Mark Twain’s quote, I get the reference too. Thanks. Cheers!!

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