An advocacy group pushing for minimum wage increases in Portland and statewide released private poll results Thursday that it says suggest strong support in Portland for increasing the minimum wage from $7.50 to $10.10 an hour, but somewhat less support for a referendum proposal to double the minimum to $15 an hour.

The automated telephone poll was commissioned by the Maine People’s Alliance and was conducted by the Maine People’s Resource Center, a pollster that is closely affiliated with MPA and shares a Portland office with the advocacy group. The results are based on a telephone survey of 452 likely Portland voters, conducted Aug. 22-24 using an interviewer’s recorded voice. It has a margin of error of 4.5 percent, according to the pollster.

Of those polled, 75 percent said they support the City Council’s effort to raise the minimum wage in Portland from $7.50 an hour to $10.10 in 2016 and then $10.68 in 2017. Asked if they support raising the minimum to $15 – a proposal to be voted on citywide on Nov. 3 – 48.2 percent said they support the idea, 39.7 percent said they oppose it and 12.1 percent said they have not decided.

In the upcoming race for mayor, 46 percent of poll respondents said they support challenger Ethan Strimling and 21.4 percent said they support incumbent Mayor Michael Brennan. Four percent said they support Green Party leader Thomas MacMillan and 2.2 percent said they support firefighter Chris Vail.


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