Democratic presidential nominee front-runner Joe Biden saw his support drop 10 percentage points after Thursday night’s slugfest presidential debate.
After coming out on the wrong end of a clash with California Sen. Kamala Harris, support for the former vice president dropped from 41.5% to 31.5%, according to a Morning Consult/FiveThirtyEight poll.
Harris ripped Biden in Thursday night’s debate for his complicated history of civil rights positions that include opposing forced busing to ensure school integration. Biden also raised the ire of several Democratic lawmakers when he bragged about his relationship with “two United States senators who built their reputation and career on the segregation of race in this country,” as Harris described it during the debate.
Other prominent Democrats ranging from New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker to New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have criticized those comments. (RELATED: Biden And Harris Clock In With Most Speaking Time During Debate)
Harris stuck to the issue of school busing as she related a personal story and wondered how Biden could have worked with segregationists.
“It was not only that, but you also worked with them to oppose busing. There was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools and she was bused to school every day,” Harris recalled. “That little girl was me.”
Biden fought back, telling Harris and the audience that he had always supported civil rights and that “I do not praise racists.” (RELATED: Joe Biden Has Endorsed Segregation, Calling It ‘Black Pride’)
In terms of sheer numbers, Harris was the big winner in the debate as her support climbed from 7.9% to 16.6% overnight, according to the poll.
The poll asked 7,150 participants between June 19 and 26 about how they rated candidates before the debate. Those results have a margin of error of plus or minus 1%. The post-debate results came from asking 1,300 of the original participants who they then supported. Those results have a margin of error of plus or minus 3%.