New York: Legalization Measures Possess Majority Support

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director February 18, 2014

    Most New York state voters support regulating the adult use of cannabis, while a super-majority endorse legalizing the plant for therapeutic purposes, according to a recently released Quinnipiac University poll.

    Fifty-seven percent of respondents support “allowing adults in New York State to legally possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use.” Only 39 percent of respondents opposed the idea.

    Respondents most likely to favor legalization include those age 18 to 29 (83 percent), Democrats (65 percent), those age 30 to 49 (61 percent), and men (63 percent). Support is significant lower among women (51 percent), Republicans (39 percent), and those over the age of 65 (38 percent).

    On the issue of legalizing cannabis for therapeutic purposes, voter support rose to 88 percent — with the issue receiving super-majority support from respondents of every age and political affiliation.

    In separate questions, only 13 percent of respondents say that they believe that cannabis is “more dangerous” than alcohol, and fewer than half believe that it is a ‘gateway’ to other illicit substance use.

    The survey possesses a margin of error of +/- 2.5 percentage points.

    Legislation to legalize the possession, cultivation, and retail sale of the plant — the “Marihuana Regulation and Taxation Act” — is pending in both the New York state Senate and the Assembly. Separate legislation to allow qualified patients to possess and purchase cannabis for therapeutic purposes also remains pending.

    In January, Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo — who had previously expressed opposition to allowing for the medical use of cannabis — announced plans to use his executive powers to revive a dormant research program that would allow for the use of government-grown marijuana in select hospitals. However, efforts to reestablish similar programs in other states have not been effective.

    25 responses to “New York: Legalization Measures Possess Majority Support”

    1. Gary says:

      13 percent of respondents should not be giving input to a subject they have no knowledge on.
      Cannabis cannot be compared to alcohol, cannabis has never killed anyone. Also please stop calling cannabis a gateway drug, the only reason someone would come to that conclusion is because it is labelled as an illegal drug- so let’s change that and stop the confusion which clearly is the bigger issue.

    2. TheOracle says:

      As New York goes, so goes the nation.

      If New York would legalize cannabis for both medical and recreational use, industrial use, then, as a country, we would be a gigantic step closer to ending this madness of marginalizing people, especially people of color, by putting them through the criminal justice pulverizing machine, you know, the system that pounds them down and keeps them down, and then the Right bitches about how they are a drag on society because they can’t have/get jobs and thus are dependent on social services.

      President Obama ought to give NY the nod to go ahead and legalize, and if they can’t get the legislation passed into law then to just simply stop spending any money whatsoever on enforcement to bust and close down cannabis coffeeshops, starting with The Big Apple.

    3. Ray says:

      The New York mmj program is to be run by the NYS Dept. Of Health. Nothing available yet on their web site, I guess I need to call them. The mmj is supposed to be supplied from marijuana seized by the State Police or the federal government. Not retail, licensed and taxed like other states.

      There are legalization and medical mj bills ready to go up for Senate vote yet never makes it to the floor before the end of session (June 19, 2014). This year will be different because the 88% will be watching and our vote wants to see this happen.

      Please stop voting for senators like Greg Ball who still calls marijuana a gateway drug with no medical benefits. Yea I write to him a lot but keep getting the same boiler plate letter response.

      NORML, can you put a countdown clock for New York Senate end of session to let them know we are waiting for them to bring this up for a vote? Or better yet find a way to at least bring this to the floor and be voted on?

      Full legalization will happen, it just appears that our forefathers put a lot of layers of law down to make sure what ever they are hiding stays hidden.

      Oh, I bought hemp oil today, it can only be imported because well we all know how dangerous hemp can be.

    4. wbs 101 says:

      Wow 88% for medical. In the next few years it will be in the 90s. Prohibition is on the way out it difficult to find anyone that thinks you should be arrested for cannabis other than people that profit from it. I think we will see some sort of federal legalization in the next 5 years.

    5. See God Kai says:

      With such a majority in favor of legalization, what is the current status of a ballot measure for New York? Is any group actively working on this? Thanks.

    6. Weed The People says:

      Put it up for VOTE !!!! Let the people decide not some dumb Politican.

    7. 420Elite says:

      TheOracle. I think you are right. If it works in NY it will work any where. Ban big gulps and free the weed. If you need any nice smoking pieces there’s some sweet ones at http://420elite.com getting new glass pipes and bongs everyday.

    8. scott says:

      drug testing keeps legal status a moot point. why are you begging these people to tax you on something they wont let you use anyway?

    9. Galileo Galilei says:

      The 52% of women opposed is surprising. I wonder if it’s misconstrued as just as likely as alcohol to lead to violent, abusive relationships. Not so, ladies.

    10. TheOracle says:

      Regarding drug testing for cannabis making the legal status a moot point, that is right now becoming an ever more short-lived aspect of the change, the growth (pun intended), we have going on.

      In some countries they sent a joint to their politicians, and I have seen over the decades such organized actions or means of agitprop, such as Colin Davies giving the Queen a flowering cannabis plant, a flower for her.

      How about this for agitprop: Operation What a Pisser?!

      You prohibitionists like piss! Well, while it is legal to send a container of urine through the mail, it has to be correctly triple packaged and sealed, it would be much easier to keep pissing on a dish towel or let your dog keep pissing on the same dish towel, let it dry, then package it up so that no odor is detected, then mail it in to your politicians. Farmers in France dump milk tanker trucks and stuff on the streets to make their points, so you could, in theory, have farmers dumping tankers of animal urine in solidarity in support of the Million Marijuana March. Americans tend Not to protest in such ways, but done in DC or simultaneously also in some state capitals it would definitely get the media’s attention. It’s organic and biodegradable, fertilizer for the Mall in DC, nice green lawn on the Mall afterward.

      Let’s hope prohibition is soon over, drug testing for cannabis soon over, because that idead stinks. Ha ha!