New Pew Poll Finds That 53% Of Americans Support Legalizing Marijuana


How many polls does it take for marijuana opponents to realize that their efforts are futile? Every poll result I have seen for quite a awhile now has been favorable towards marijuana reform. Yet another poll was released yesterday which found a majority of Americans support marijuana legalization, this time by the Pew Research Center. Per the poll:

marijuana majority mayor mayors

Public opinion about legalizing marijuana, while little changed in the past few years, has undergone a dramatic long-term shift. A new survey finds that 53% favor the legal use of marijuana, while 44% are opposed.  As recently as 2006, just 32% supported marijuana legalization, while nearly twice as many (60%) were opposed.

Crucially, the poll finds that people are much more likely to change their minds from opposing legalization to supporting it than vice versa. Among the overall public, 21% of people support legalization now but once opposed it. In contrast, just 7% of people used to support legalization and now oppose it. Tom Angell from the Marijuana Majority had the following to say about the poll results:

"The more that people learn about marijuana and look at the benefits of legalization, the more likely they are to support reform. Our opponents sure do have a lot to say about what they see as the benefits of continuing prohibition, but voters don't want to hear it."

Below are key findings from the poll, also supplied by Mr. Angell:

* Legalization support is particularly high among Democrats (59%) and independents (58%).

* 59% of Americans, and a majority in both parties, say that the feds should not enforce marijuana laws in states that allow use.

* Even among people who oppose legalization, more than a third (38%) say the feds should not enforce marijuana laws in states that allow use.

* 57% of Americans say it wouldn't bother them if a marijuana business opened in their neighborhood.

* 82% of Americans say it doesn't bother them if people use marijuana in their own homes.