PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - Polls indicate it could be a hotly contested race for mayor of Portland.
Both Mayor Ted Wheeler and challenger Sarah Iannarone have sold themselves as progressive, but they have very different ideas about how the city should be run, particularly the Portland Police Bureau.
FOX 12 checked in with both candidates Tuesday.
QUESTION: The latest poll we saw back in mid-October had you and Ms. Iannarone running a very close race, basically tied, but also with some 27% of voters undecided still. How do you feel about that and this whole thing being kind of up in the air right now?
WHEELER: Well, it is up in the air, and that's why I'm not taking anything for granted.
WHEELER: I'm just making a strong case to folks that I'm the person in this race with the experience and the leadership who can get us through the COVID crisis, get us through the economic downturn and see us through to the other side.
QUESTION: The latest polls that we saw showed you and the incumbent basically in a dead heat. How do you feel about that and what do you think it says?
IANNARONE: I think it says that Portlanders are hungry for change and they're not satisfied with the current leadership.
QUESTION: They found about 27% of the voters were undecided. What do you think they're on the fence about?
IANNARONE: I think it's a question between stability in a time of great chaos versus change that hasn't been proven necessarily at the highest levels of elected office yet. It's a bit of a gamble on a newcomer, on an outsider. But I see them deliberating the opportunity that progressive change presents versus the liabilities that staying the course that hasn't been working offers.
The poll numbers came from DHM Research for Oregon Public Broadcasting.
Regarding police reform, Wheeler said he won’t be rushed into cutting millions more from the police budget.
Iannarone has said she would put Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty in charge of the Portland Police Bureau, and Hardesty has proposed cutting an additional $18 million from the police budget.
FOX 12 will have full election coverage tonight on TV and online at https://www.kptv.com/yourvote.
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