Hillary Clinton's once-commanding lead in Iowa has shrunk to just seven percentage points, while Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has surged in the state whose caucuses will kick off the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. The Des Moines Register-Bloomberg Politics poll, considered the gold standard of Iowa surveys, found Clinton with the support of 37 percent of likely Democratic caucus-goers, followed by Sanders at 30 percent. Vice President Biden, who is contemplating a late entry into the race, came in third at 14 percent, while former Maryland governor Martin O'Malley was a distant fourth at 3 percent. Without Biden in the race, the poll showed Clinton leading Sanders, 43 percent to 35 percent.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.