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Poll: Adults In Legal Marijuana States Don’t Have ‘Buyer’s Remorse’

In every state except Maine, a majority of respondents characterized legalization as a success.

Eleven states have legalized marijuana for recreational use and a plurality of adults in those states don’t regret it, a new poll finds. That doesn’t mean adults in these states consider legalization an unmitigated success. Instead they would characterize recreational marijuana legalization as more of a success than a failure.

YouGov polled more than 32,000 Americans, asking if adult-use legalization in their state “has been a success or a failure.” In every state except Maine, a majority of respondents characterized legalization as a success. At least two-thirds of adults called legal adult-use marijuana a success in five states — Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and Massachusetts.

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“This polling data reaffirms that most voters do not experience ‘buyer’s remorse’ following marijuana legalization,” NORML’s Deputy Director Paul Armentano said in a statement. “In the minds of most Americans, adult-use marijuana regulations are operating as voters intended and in a manner that is consistent with their expectations.”

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These beliefs appear strongest in states with the longest ties to legal recreational marijuana, YouGov noted. In the poll, respondents could choose between five different answers: “Success only,” “more of a success than a failure,” “more of a failure than a success,” “failure only” or “don’t know.”

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Approximately one-fourth of residents in Colorado, where voters approved recreational marijuana in 2012, called adult-use marijuana laws a “success only” while 45% of them labeled the laws “more of a success than a failure.” A little less than one in five Colorado residents (17%) said recreational marijuana laws were a “failure only.”

Maine isn’t as high on the state’s legal recreational marijuana laws, though they have good reason. Less than half of respondents (47%) said legal marijuana has been more of a success. A third of residents said they were uncertain about the laws while one five said they were more of a failure. Though Maine residents voted to legalize adult-use marijuana in 2016, lawmakers and regulators still have not fully implemented marijuana laws.

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