Poll: Sixty-One Percent of Americans Favor Legalization of Marijuana

It has been fascinating to watch the rapid political and economic changes favoring the legalization of marijuana, including the growth of a market worth billions in sales and taxes. The most recent polling by Associated Press and the University of Chicago has found a record-high percentage of Americans — 61 percent.

Those answering yes to the following question jumped from 58 to 61 percent since just last October:

“Do you think the use of marijuana should be made legal, or not?”

There is more variation on the specifics of legalization. Some 24 percent of legalization supporters said marijuana should be made available “only with a medical prescription.” Another 43 percent said there should be “restrictions on purchase amounts.” However, one-third of legalization supporters said there should be “no restrictions” on purchase amounts.

What was particularly interesting was that almost half (47 percent) of Republicans favored legalization despite the generally opposed view of GOP presidential candidates. The percentage is higher for Democrats (70 percent support) and independents (65 percent).

Not surprisingly there is also a significant difference based on age. Eighty-two percent of 18-to-29 year olds support legalization while only 44 percent favor legalizations who are above the age of 60. Those are the two biggest groups respectively for Sanders (18 to 29) and Clinton (above 60).

The Democrats are already responding to this shift. The question will be how far Clinton is willing to go and how Republican leaders are likely to change. One obvious response is to return to the GOP position in favor of state’s rights (a position honored often in the breach). The GOP could thread the political needle by simply supporting the right of states to make this decision and agree to decriminalize on a federal level. However, the roughly half of Republicans supporting legalization appear to be largely unrepresented in the views of most GOP candidates.

Source: Washington Post

29 thoughts on “Poll: Sixty-One Percent of Americans Favor Legalization of Marijuana”

  1. I wouldn’t smoke the stuff,but I don’t think I should tell someone else that they can’t. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  2. freedomfan:

    I too and a conservative who feels like you do.

    You are right in your perception of the Commerce Clause. In my opinion, recent Supreme Court rulings have clearly re-defined the scope and application of the Commerce Clause. I feel that a new challenge aimed at many laws created by the liberals, and a few by Republicans, using the Commerce Clause as justification, could result in having them overturned.

    In the area of Federal jurisdiction of controlled substances by the Commerce Clause, if the pot never crosses state lines, then the Feds have no jurisdiction what so ever, with the possible exception of a tax stamp.

    Huge blocks of Federal Laws are built upon the Feds “jurisdiction” under the Commerce Clause. Without organizations like Judicial Watch, which I recommend donating money to, the Fed power over the individual will continue to grow and result in the very nightmare of tyranny our founding fathers warned about.

    1. Jim, please be reminded that the staunchest conservative on the Court, recently deceased, crapped in favor of regulating a pot plant growing in Ms. Raich’s backyard under the Commerce Clause via the Supremacy Clause.

  3. As stated in previous comments, “BEWARE” the hidden agenda ballot measures. Big money is lining up to try and corner the legal pot market where ever it can.

    1. To Jim R.

      It’s interesting isn’t it that it was the Hearst conglomerate which led the formation of the hemp laws and used demon Pot to drive it home. Now the media portrays it as benign, even playful.

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