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New poll shows clear winner of second Democratic debates — and a very big loser

The field is shaping up, expect many to drop out

Photographer: Jayme Gershen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A new poll from Quinnipiac University shows one candidate clearly gaining from her performance at the second Democratic debates, while another losing a lot of support.

The poll released on Tuesday showed that Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) got a jolt in support from the debate, with an increase of 6 percentage points from 15 percent to 21 percent, putting her in second place.

Former Vice President Joe Biden lost 2 percentage points of support, but still retains the top spot with 32 percent in the Quinnipiac poll.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) also did well, with an increase of 3 percentage points from 11 percent before the debate, to 14 percent after the debate.

The big loser, according to the poll, was Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), who slipped to fourth place after losing 5 percentage points from 12 percent to 7 percent.

Dave Weigel of the Washington Post theorized that the candidates who went "hard negative" did not increase in support, and he cited Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D) of Hawaii as an example.

Warren was seen as the candidate with the best debate performance by a plurality of those polled.

Ironically, Gabbard won for being the highest searched candidate on Google analytics after two of the debates, which shows the limited value of those metrics for measuring political viability.

Here's more on polling in the Democratic race:

Steve Kornacki: More Than Half Of Democrats Want A More Progressive President Than Obama | MSNBC www.youtube.com

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