PORTLAND, Ore. - An exclusive KATU News poll offers insight into how Portland residents plan to vote in the contentious issue of fluoridating water.
Of the 800 Portlanders polled by Survey USA - including nearly 600 likely voters -- 48 percent say they plan to vote against fluoride, while 39 percent say they favor fluoride. Fourteen percent were undecided.
The survey results also show the greatest support for fluoride is among the youngest voters - and the oldest. About 45 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds supported fluoride. While roughly one-third of voters aged 35 to 64 are in favor of fluoride, that percentage spikes to 44 percent among voters older than 65.
When you break down the votes by race, there's a huge difference. Forty-two percent of white voters say they'd vote yes, but only 30 percent of black and Asian voters agree.
What's more, 9 percent of Hispanic voters support fluoridation (72 percent said no.)
People have different views on fluoride depending on what part of the city they live, as well. Southwest Portland saw the greatest number of fluoride supporters, with 59 percent who say they'd support it. Compare that percentage to North Portland, where only 30 percent of voters said they'd vote yes.
Ballots are due May 21. We'll have another survey on fluoride next week.