Record Number Supports Marijuana Legalization

26 October, 2017, 01:06 | Author: Colin Gill
  • Cannabis Legalization Hasn't Resulted In Any Major Problems For Colorado Officials

Gallup pollsters have been surveying Americans about marijuana legalization since 1969, periodically asking respondents: "Do you think the use of marijuana should be made legal, or not?"

For the first time in almost 50 years of Gallup polling on the question, a majority of American Republicans say they support marijuana legalization. Gallup found that 51 percent of Republicans questioned support marijuana legalization.

In late November 2012, following the states of Colorado and Washington voting to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, the Gallup marijuana poll showed support of legalization at 48 percent.

In response to the latest numbers, the Marijuana Policy Project, the nation's largest marijuana-focused policy organization, said the increased support for legalization "makes sense".

Seventy-two percent of Democrats support legalizing marijuana at the federal level, and a majority have supported legalization since 2009.

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GallupRising support for legalizing marijuana seems to be a function of growing familiarity with it, which is in turn correlated with age. Most recently marijuana was legalized in 2016 in California, Massachusetts, Nevada, and ME via citizen referenda and voters in a number of other states approved legalization for medicinal purposes.

Legal marijuana now has equal support to gay marriage among Americans, Gallup notes. In 2010 Democrats were nearly twice as likely as Republicans to favor legalization.

Overall support for legalization has been rising since the mid-1980s, but the upward trend has accelerated in recent years as more and more states have moved away from prohibition. Sessions could have an uphill battle in shoring up support for his anti-marijuana crusade if he cannot even count on his own party. But if more and more Republican voters begin to support pro-marijuana candidates during the primaries, they could begin to shift marijuana policies throughout the United States.

Tom Angell, founder of Marijuana Majority, a cannabis advocacy group, told Business Insider in a statement that it would be "politically disastrous", for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to initiate a crackdown on state-legal marijuana businesses.

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