As nationwide polls continue to show Democrat Joe Biden holding a significant lead over Donald Trump in a one-on-one 2020 presidential election matchup, a new poll also shows that Biden may be the only Democrat who can defeat Trump in two Southern states that carry a combined 42 Electoral College votes.
According to a new poll released Tuesday by the southern-focused Mason-Dixon polling firm, in Florida, which Trump won by a narrow 1.3 percentage point margin over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election, Biden now holds a two-point advantage in a head-to-head matchup. The former vice president polled at 47 percent in Florida, while Trump recorded 45 percent support in the state.
None of the other leading Democrats look like they can defeat Trump and win Florida's 29 electoral votes, assuming the Mason-Dixon polling results prove accurate. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, who currently polls second to Biden in the race for the Democratic nomination, trails Trump by six percentage points in Florida, per the New Year's Eve poll, 51-45.
According to the average of all Democratic primary polls compiled by the data site FiveThirtyEight.com, Sanders is currently running a distant second to Biden nationwide, with 17.7 percent support among Democratic voters to 27.7 percent for the frontrunner — a 10-point deficit.
In Florida, Elizabeth Warren runs even further behind Trump than Sanders. The Massachusetts senator is looking at a nine-point deficit, 51-42, according to the Mason-Dixon results. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg trails Trump by four percentage points in Florida, 49-45.
The situation is similar in Virginia, a state won by Clinton in 2016. Democrats will likely need Virginia to remain in the "blue" column in next year's election to have a realistic chance at winning in the Electoral College. But, again, a Mason-Dixon state poll there appears to show that Biden is the only Democrat capable of preventing Virginia from flipping back into Republican grasp, along with its 13 Electoral College votes, for the first time since 2004.
According to the poll, Biden defeats Trump in Virginia by four points, slightly less than the 4.9 point margin that gave Virginia to Clinton in 2016. Biden received 49 percent support to 45 percent for Trump, according to the poll. But for the other leading Democrats, the outlook in Virginia appears bleak.
Sanders was trounced by Trump in the Virginia poll by six percentage points, 51-45. The other two top Democrats fared somewhat better but nonetheless would face uphill battles to keep the state Democratic. Warren trailed Trump in the poll by four, 48-44. Buttigieg came away with a somewhat better showing, lagging behind Trump by just two points, 47-45, according to the Mason-Dixon Virginia state survey.