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Gallup Finds Record Support for Legalizing Marijuana, Including Most Republicans

According to the latest survey, 64 percent of all American adults and 51 percent of Republicans think pot should be legal.

The latest Gallup poll finds record public support for legalizing marijuana, including a majority of Republicans for the first time in the half a century the organization has been asking the question. According to the poll, which was conducted October 5 to 11, 64 percent of all American adults and 51 percent of Republicans think "the use of marijuana should be made legal," up from 60 percent and 42 percent, respectively, last year.

GallupGallup

Overall support for legalization has been rising since the mid-1980s, but the upward trend has accelerated in recent years as more and more states have moved away from prohibition. After rising by 10 points (29 percent) between 2001 and 2009, the percentage of Americans who say pot should be legal rose by 20 points (45 percent) between 2009 and 2017. The shift among Republicans has been even more dramatic, with support rising by nine points (21 percent) in just the last year.

There is still a gap between Democrats and Republicans on this issue, but it is narrowing. In 2010 Democrats were almost twice as likely as Republicans to favor legalization. Last year support was 28 points, or 67 percent, higher among Democrats. This year the difference is 21 points, or 41 percent.

GallupGallupRising support for legalizing marijuana seems to be a function of growing familiarity with it, which is in turn correlated with age. In another Gallup poll conducted last July, 45 percent of adults admitted trying marijuana, more than 10 times the number in 1969. Direct experience with marijuana was most common among 30-to-49-year-olds, 51 percent of whom said they had tried it, and least common among respondents 65 or older, only 23 percent of whom said they had. Support for legalization is also lowest in the oldest cohort, which is the only age group in which a majority still opposes it.

As the oldest cohort dies off, Republicans as well as Democrats are increasingly likely to say marijuana should be legal. It was already true that most Republicans thought the federal government should not try to stop states from legalizing marijuana. Now it looks like most of them have turned against pot prohibition, further complicating any plans Attorney General Jeff Sessions might have to make a last stand in its defense.

"As public support for ending marijuana prohibition continues to grow, it is crucial that states continue to be given the freedom to serve as laboratories of democracy," says Morgan Fox, director of communications at the Marijuana Policy Project. "We urge the Department of Justice in particular to continue its policy of not interfering in states with well-regulated adult-use and medical marijuana programs while lawmakers catch up to the will of the people."

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  • Hugh Akston||

    If Kevin Sabet's bathroom mirror wasn't completely covered in masking tape, he would be looking into it right now wondering what he's doing with his life.

  • Calidissident||

    I was just about to take a shot at Sabet, you beat me to it.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Too much scorn is never enough to heap upon that pusillanimous authoritarian douche.

  • DajjaI||

    Guys we've already moved on to Kolodny.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Maybe we can talk about legalization if everyone agrees to give first pick of the limited growing/distributing licenses to those who would lose income from any prohibition repeal.

  • Richnunya||

    That sure sounds like a free market idea.

  • SQRLSY One||

    So when will the old-geezer gerontocrats (State-guv geezers and the likes of Jeff Sessions at the Fed level) all just do us a favor, keel over dead, and get the hell out of our way? I guess freedom can be had, only one funeral at a time...

    But then the younger generation now no longer believes in free speech!!! WTF?!?!

  • Hank Phillips||

    If the younger generation learned from its prohibitionist elders that the initiation of force is the answer to all ills, then a quick solution to the gerontocracy problem would pop right out of ordinary methods of inference. Um... is this younger generation hip to "methods of inference" by any chance?

  • workerant||

    Endocannabanoid receptors evolved in humans for good reason to prevent insanity. Unfettered corporate power has commodified every aspect of life but crazy people continue thriving. Pedophiles, murderers, rapists and other insane people can be dealt with through law enforcement but normal people need a way to "forget" about the crazy people sometimes- especially if you were abused by parents or perhaps experienced PTSD from battle in war. For any politician like Sessions to rail against the posivitive uses of marijuana means they are supporting the unnatural and insane over innocence and purity. I agree that legalizing marijuana will increase the "stupid" factor with those who have no interest in working and want a socialist government- but they can de-evolve just fine in an institution somewhere if all goes well. The rest of us can hopefully continue evolving into organized structures of beautiful beings that was the dream of America's founders.

  • SIV||

    Why do you think they call it dope?

  • Hank Phillips||

    By "they" are we talking pulpit-thumping mystical bigots? Anslinger said it, they believe it, that settles it! Q.E.D.

  • Sam Grove||

    I don't think 51% qualifies as "most", at best, a slim majority.

  • SIV||

    Why do you think they call it dope?

  • Qsl||

    Worse- with the moral panic over opioid deaths, prohibitionist have been conflating any move towards legalization with even more corpses lining the streets, unsavory sorts lacing pot with bath salts or worse, and all manner of mischief to bring civilization crumbling.

    The support of legalization is at best tenuous, and is likely to fall apart with the first news of legalization contributing to rampant sodomy or people putting toilet paper on the dispenser the wrong way.

    It is going to require more than tepid support to answer the accusations of pot babies and even some thinking government regulation of soda is a good idea.

  • Hank Phillips||

    So, how many more cops need to shoot teenagers in the back to make marijuana go away the way beer did in 1933? Say... wasn't there a financial collapse during that Prohibition?

  • Hank Phillips||

    Should we therefore conclude that the 49% who believe that continuing to use deadly force to ban beer plants are a mentally healthy and well-informed minority?

  • ALWAYS RIGHT||

    Drugs, gambling, prostitution should be legal. Jeff Sessions should be illegal.

  • Lester224||

    Legalizing MJ comes with lower rates of opiod addiction. The pharma companies lobby against legalized MJ with a lot of enthusiasm because they sell less fentanyl in those areas.

    https://tinyurl.com/yacpsl3c

  • Rich||

    64 percent of all American adults and 51 percent of Republicans think "the use of marijuana should be made legal"

    Is that *any* use, or "proper" use?

  • Memory Hole||

    There's whole mess of motherfuckers in this world who view drug useres as subhumans. Marijuana may be slipping out of the concentration camp but don't kid yourself.

  • Magnitogorsk||

    God republicans suck

  • Hank Phillips||

    They also send cops to kill children, and their sanctimonious looting collapses economies.

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    Wow, 12 people!

  • Hank Phillips||

    The Democratic party in 2016 muffed its chance to copy a repeal plank from the LP. Deep Dems earned the beating their cops inflict on hippies and brown people. God's Own Prohibitionists, rather, were quick to adapt the LP planks on energy and guns to their own menu and prevail. But with mid-term elections coming up, I'd legally wager the Dems will suddenly realize voters do not like being handcuffed, beaten, robbed and shot for no reason. With any luck, Climate Millerites will be thrown under their bus and the Godly will dial back support for asset-forfeiture looting. Four million libertarian votes were a 2x4 whack to the skull for both looter kleptocracy parties. Anyone care to make it 8 million?

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: Gallup Finds Record Support for Legalizing Marijuana, Including Most Republicans

    Legalizing MJ only makes sense.
    Hence, that's why both political parties refuse to legalize it.

  • Jim Strom||

    Jeff Sessions is like a Civil War re-enactor; born too late for the "war", but fighting it nonetheless.

  • Rockabilly||

    I just ate a marijuana chocolate chip cookie. Am I in violation of the socialist god, FDR's Marihuana Tax Act?

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Excuse me, but given the cock-up the polls made of the 2016 election, why should we take them seriously on any topic?

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