The first poll of Oregon voters in the November 2020 election, released Sept. 11, shows that Democratic Party nominee Joe Biden leads President Donald Trump by 12 points, 51% to 39%.

The survey was conducted over a three-day period by Portland-based DHM Research, an independent, nonpartisan public opinion firm, and is the second of three surveys conducted. DHM surveyed 502 voters, with a 4.4% margin of error.

It projects nearly the exact same outcome as the 2016 election in Oregon, where former U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton defeated Trump 50% to 39%.

DHM Research political director John Horvick said he wasn't as surprised by the 12-point gap, although he did expect a slightly different outcome.

"Given how Democratic Oregon is, I thought it would shift more to Biden, but it hasn't at all," Horvick said. "It's not a surprise at this moment that we are pretty locked in. It just shows how locked in we are."

Both parties overwhelmingly support their nominees: 91% of Republicans plan to vote for Trump and 5% plan to vote for Biden. Biden has 87% of the Democratic vote, while 8% anticipate voting for Trump.

The bulk of Biden voters reside in the Portland metro area and the Willamette Valley while Trump voters make up the majority in the rest of the state.

The survey also asked voters about their feelings surrounding COVID-19, reporting significant differences between Democrats and Republicans.

A striking difference between Trump and Biden supporters is the worry of COVID-19 spreading: 85% of Biden supporters are worried, while only 43% of Trump supporters are concerned about the virus.

Horvick said another section of the data is noteworthy: Oregonians are not terribly concerned about their personal finances. In fact, the numbers reported show the least amount of concern in a decade.

"The economy is more complicated than an unemployment number," Horvick said. "But people don't have a lot of ways to spend money right now; it complicates the picture a bit."