ABC News: Public’s Support For Pot Legalization Has Never Been Higher!

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director April 30, 2009

    Earlier this year, a NORML-commissioned national Zogby telephone poll revealed that a record 44 percent of American voters — including nearly six out of ten adults on the west coast — now believe that cannabis should be “taxed and legally regulated like alcohol and cigarettes.”

    Since then, several additional polls have confirmed that the nation’s support for legalizing marijuana has never been higher, and is fast approaching “super-majority status.”

    In fact, a recent poll sponsored by Oaksterdam University indicates that support for legalization among Californians has already achieved such vaulted status (well, almost).

    Today two more polls are reaffirming America’s new “marijuana Zeitgeist.”

    First, in California a new Field Research Corporation poll of 901 registered voters found that 56 percent of voters agree with the statement: “Legalize marijuana for recreational use and tax its proceeds.”

    According to pollsters, this is the first time ever in a California Field poll that a majority of voters have endorsed regulating the adult use of cannabis. In February, California Assemblyman Tom Ammiano introduced legislation — Assembly Bill 390: The Marijuana Control, Regulation and Education Act — to tax the commercial production and retail sale of cannabis. To date, over 8,000 NORML supporters have contacted their state representatives in support of AB 390, which is expected to be taken up by the state Assembly early next year.

    Nationally, a just-released ABC News/Washington Post poll of 1,072 adults finds that a record 46 percent of all Americans now favor “legalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use.” This total is more than double the percentage of Americans who responded affirmatively (22 percent) to a similar ABC poll question in 1997!

    via ABCNews.go.com

    46 percent of Americans now favor legalizing small amounts of marijuana for personal use, the most in data back to the mid-
    1980s and more than double its level 12 years ago. While 52 percent remain opposed, that’s down from 75 percent in the late 1990s and 78 percent in 1986.

    The biggest changes in the past two decades are 29- and 27-point advances in support for legalization among Democrats and independents, to 49 and 53 percent, respectively. The slightest: a 10-point gain among Republicans, to just 28 percent support.

    So much for the myth that supporting marijuana law reform is ‘politically suicidal.’ In fact, if you are a politician — or President — whose constituency leans Democrat or Independent, it’s becoming increasingly likely that more of your supporters favor legalization over prohibition, and if you want to stay elected, you should too!

    138 responses to “ABC News: Public’s Support For Pot Legalization Has Never Been Higher!”

    1. jeff newman says:

      this is really good news americans are finally waking up.

      and if the unenlightened were told that now we would have all the benefits of legalized hemp we would get even more converts to the cause. speak more about hemp NORML as we end the prohibition on both weeds.

    2. jeff newman says:

      i’m an independant voter who will no vote for Obama again given his performance to date. fortunately he has a few thousand more days of the first term to educated himself on the entire issue of the prohibition on cannabis & hemp.

    3. ola says:

      It amazes me that republicans always rant and rave about wanting smaller government and reducing welfare, however go on and support bigger government and corporate welfare with their policies. Drug prohibition is one of the biggest government programs there is. If and when the republicans truly become small government conservatives, we will all be free.

    4. R.O.E. says:

      Politicians better start paying attention if they havent already. We the people are SIck and Tired of the wars our government has us in. We were sick of the war on drugs long ago,its just now people are finding their voice. Its snowballin people.

    5. champagne2878 says:

      i think the percentage would be even higher if more people were not scared to answer yes but that high of a percentage reported is a GREAT sign that we will soon be able to overcome this 🙂

    6. Vladimir M. Ortega says:

      Hell yeah 46%…Theres got to be a national poll for next year. Come on everybody that knows somebody that is in favor of the Legalization of Hemp them let them know that you need there support and maybe 2 or 5 dollars to donate to Norml or MPP. We have got to wake up and realize that with out any money been put in to this it will not work! We have got to do it like those BIG CORPORATIONS….they have money so they can organiuze things and form anything….so thats what we all have to be WE WILL BE THE BIGGEST MARIJUANA

    7. craig says:

      My parents were very anti-drug/Republican but when I showed them how it helped me and I was able to still get really good grades in school and had a job and my life going good, they gradually changed their minds. They are in favor of legalization now.

      Change people’s minds by showing them that you are above what the anti-drug commercials say you are. You are above that influence and prove it to people. Gradually we will get that number up into the 70’s and then we will be free of the horrible policy which is prohibition.

    8. Will S. says:

      Keep speaking the truth Mr. Armentano. I for one will not vote for anyone who will not change their stance on cannabis legalization or decriminilization. Anyone who keeps spouting the same old War on Drugs bullshit can’t count on my vote. EVER! These backward idiots who think that pouring more money into prohibition and promising to keep my kids safe can kiss my ass. I need them to take drugs off the streets by regulating them. And put the Cannabis in stores so I can buy it and use it responsibly while providing tax revenue to my beautiful Golden State which is in a financial crisis at the moment. Getting tired of waiting.

    9. Zach says:

      i think this is a good idea..Saves police time an also saves lives in cancer its a plant like all plants god put on earth for humans why not make it legal when it grows wild!!!

    10. We must march forward.

      We must continue to use the machete of truth to clear the foliage of propaganda from their sight. Hack long enough and they’ll see the path to common sense!