59% of All Americans Want Marijuana to Be Legalized

  • by Erik Altieri, NORML Executive Director October 24, 2012

    A new poll, conducted by Huffington Post and YouGov, has support for marijuana legalization at an astounding 59% amongst all Americans – the largest support yet recorded in a nationwide poll. Only 26% of respondents stated that marijuana should remain illegal.

    The survey asked 1,000 U.S. adults their views on the legalization of marijuana and provided them four options to select from. The breakdown is as follows:

    1) Marijuana should be legalized, taxed, and regulated like alcohol – 51%
    2) Marijuana should be legalized but NOT taxed and regulated like alcohol – 8%
    3) Marijuana should not be legalized – 26%
    4) Not sure – 15%

    These results show a continued upward trend in support for marijuana legalization in this country. Last year, Gallup recorded support out pacing opposition, 50% to 46%, for the first time in about four decades of polling on the question. Another survey by AngusReid had support for legalization as high as 56%. Worth noting in this recent data is that much of the country is still not comfortable with the unregulated “tomato” model of legalization and prefer regulations similar to alcohol by about 5 to 1 (52% to 8%).

    The American people are quickly opening their eyes to the egregious failure that is our government’s war on cannabis. Win or lose, the three legalization initiatives on the ballot this November in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon, have elevated legalization to a mainstream debate and helped the ending of prohibition become an issue discussed in homes across the country.

    We the people are ready to see smart and sensible reform to our marijuana laws. We will no longer stand idly by while we waste tens of millions of tax dollars on a failed policy that terrorizes our citizens and robs us of our civil liberties. Let’s Smoke the Vote this November and send a clear message to the federal government that these are the “Final Days of Prohibition.” If this latest poll is any indication, radical change will be coming to the United States’ marijuana policy, and much sooner than later.

    View more information on this poll here.

    53 responses to “59% of All Americans Want Marijuana to Be Legalized”

    1. Jeedi says:

      Most of the people I called for Colorado were positive and some said “highly supportive.” I think it will pass and so will others. But the real question will be, will the Feds allow it? With over half the country for it, and a potential billion dollar industry ready to pop up for the above ground economy and give needed support to our economic crises, why would the Federal government stand in the way? I wish we could get a straight answer. Don’t expect Obama or Romney to support any of the new legal states. I think they will try to at least stop the retail dispensaries and large grow operations from opening up. It just won’t be a crime anymore for average citizens to grow 6 plants or less, and have a couple of ounces on them. And for most marijuana people this will be paradise! Maybe we will be surprised and Holder backs down and says, “if this is what the majority of Coloradans want, who am I to stand in their way. Let’s let the legalization experiment start.”
      Marijuana legalization could spark a new Renaissance of culture trends, fashion, and of course media. In addition to feeding existing industries with money from marijuana’s above ground acceptance, legalization will also open up new markets, cures, and business that we can only imagine today. Legalization will shed light on the real medical, psychological, industrial, etc., uses for cannabis. For example, I can envision that in the future, companies will encourage their employees to use marijuana, in a controlled setting, to find new angles and ways of looking at their problems and looking for “out-of-the-box” solutions. Psychologists will recommend marijuana to their patients to help them go inside meditatively, and experience their world from a different view. Much like a doctor recommends benign, legal things like aspirin or a glass of wine today. Legalization will also allow the spiritual industry to use and accept marijuana as a spiritual tool of discovery. In the future you will see retreats where people will go to use marijuana to find the answers to life or find themselves. This is so, so, so much bigger than a few marijuana-liquor shops making money on a new product that gives tax revenues to help schools. Marijuana legalization could help put money in everybody’s pockets!

    2. Alex says:

      This is huge. We need to do everything we can to make this a part of the media narrative over the next two weeks.

    3. Bw says:

      Yeah right! That’s why the most liberal of states are’nt polling that high on their initiatives! I’ll believe this when I see results.

    4. Anonymous says:

      The Undecided just need to educate themselves about the benefits of hemp and marijuana.

    5. Gweedo says:

      @Jeedi: The Feds will probably push back against cannabis dispensaries/retail stores, but most of these ballot measures remove state penalties for marijuana possession entirely. Ergo, state and local police will not be able to do anything, even though it will still be illegal federally. So the federal government would have to spend a tremendous amount of money and resources going after individuals, which they simply do not have. So while they may attempt to shut down cannabis stores and growing operations, they will be virtually powerless against the average Colorado or Washington citizen who smokes a joint in his back yard.

    6. Bw says:

      I hate to sound like a buzz kill, but I think Washington will be the only one that passes. On the other hand I tend to think the feds will be overwhelmed, and we’ll see a nice suprise, but colorado, I’m not to optimistic. Arkansas it too damned stupid to pass medical. Washington, and Mass. I’ll put money on. Unfortunately there has to be a clear driving provision in any successful initiative.

    7. Joel: the other Joel says:

      The growing 59% of the people can make a difference.
      Liberty and Freedom is worth living.


    8. robert wroe says:

      Well I’ll be there on election day ready to vote and do my part!! Oh, wait, I’m a convicted drug felon and don’t have the right to vote… Bastards!!

    9. T says:

      I’d just like to interject that a poll of 1000 conducted by yougov and Huffington is hardly a representation of all of America.

    10. Mike L. Wallace Jr. says:

      Our government must control THC levels, production, & sales otherwise we are being set up for failure. We can’t trust ourselves with crippler zombie weed. Starting out we must buy 20 marijuana ciggerette packs for $20.00 & have about 5 different varieties. Anyone caught growing will be fined for tax evasion.