It’s tough to get the U.S. electorate to agree on much these days, but there is one hot-button topic that appears to bring together Americans across the political spectrum: Legalized Marijuana.
Gallup released on Wednesday its latest poll on cannabis legalization and found that 60 percent of Americans are in support.
According to Gallup,
When Gallup first asked this question in 1969, 12 percent of Americans supported the legalization of marijuana use. In the late 1970s, support rose to 28 percent but began to retreat in the 1980s during the era of the “Just Say No” to drugs campaign. Support stayed in the 25 percent range through 1995, but increased to 31 percent in 2000 and has continued climbing since then.
You read that correctly. Americans have shifted 48 percentage points on the issue since Richard Nixon’s first year in the White House.
Digging into the demographic details of the poll, Gallup found:
- In the past decade, support is up 33 percentage points to 77 percent among adults aged 18 to 34.
- Support is up 26 points among those 35-54 to 61 percent.
- Support is up 16 points among adults aged 55 and older to 45 percent.
By party affiliation
- In the past decade, support among Democrats has increased 29 percentage points to 68 percent.
- Support among independent voters has increased 24 percentage points to 70 percent.
- Republicans, which according to Gallup skew older, still are not supportive of legalization. But the support among the GOP has increased 22 percentage points to 42 percent.
Last week, the Pew Research Center released a poll showing 57 percent support for legalization.
Marijuana is fully legal in Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, Washington state and the District of Columbia. This November, voters in Arizona, California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada will decide on the issue. Three other states — Florida, Arkansas and North Dakota — will vote on whether to allow medical marijuana in its state. Montana also has a ballot measure aimed at easing its restrictive laws.
Tom Angell, chairman of the pro-legalization group Marijuana Majority, said the Gallup poll and the Pew Research Center study may signal a shift in electoral politics.
“More politicians — presidential candidates included — would do themselves a big favor to take note of the clear trend,” he said.
Highway is an essential source for cannabis science, how-to stories and demystifying marijuana. Want to read more? Thy these posts: One Man’s Journey In Pursuit Of The Truth Behind Marijuana Prohibition, Marijuana Myth Busting: Does Holding In Smoke Get You Higher? and A Drag Queen’s Visit To The Cannabis Store.