gallup poll

U.S.: Record-High Support for Legalizing Cannabis Use, Gallup Poll Finds

2017 Gallup Poll

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

Americans are warming up to legalizing cannabis, with 64% now saying its use should be made legal. This is the highest level of public support a Gallup poll has found for the proposal in nearly a half-century of measurement.

The latest figure, based on an Oct. 5-11 Gallup poll, follows shifts in the U.S. legal landscape regarding marijuana since Gallup's 2016 measure. While still illegal at the federal level, the issue was featured on a number of state ballot initiatives in 2016, and with eight states and the District of Columbia having fully legalized marijuana, more than one in five Americans live in a state where they can legally enjoy use of the drug.

U.S.: Gallup Poll Shows More Than 33 Million American Adults Use Marijuana

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A new Gallup poll released today found that the number of Americans who smoke pot has almost doubled in the last three years.

Only seven percent of Americans said they were marijuana smokers in 2013. When Gallup asked people in a new poll in July of this year, 13 percent admitted to currently using marijuana. That adds up to more than 33 million users in the U.S.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that about 40 million Americans currently smoke cigarettes. Marijuana could soon become more popular and prevalent than tobacco, which is seeing a decline in use.

Many factors contribute to this change. Several states have legalized recreational marijuana since 2013, and several more states are voting for laws for recreational and medical legalization this November.

However, recreational marijuana use remains illegal at the federal level and in most states. Police are arresting people for possessing marijuana at record-high rates -- more than 1,700 per day, according to 2014 data from the FBI.

Decreased social stigma has probably also helped turn things around. And exposure: in the late 1960s, fewer than 5 percent of adults told Gallup they had ever smoked marijuana. Today that number is up to 43 percent. So nearly half of American adults now have first-hand experience using marijuana, whether they currently use or not.

U.S.: New Gallup Poll Shows Record 58% Support For Marijuana Legalization

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A majority of Americans continue to say marijuana should be legal in the United States, with 58 percent now holding that opinion, equaling the highest-ever support in Gallup's 46-year trend.

Support for legalizing recreational cannabis has grown steadily among Americans over time, reports Jeffrey M. Jones at Gallup. When Gallup first asked the question, back in the heady hippy days of 1969, just 12 percent of Americans said they thought marijuana use should be legal, with little change in two early 1970s polls.

But by the late 70s, with tacit approval from the Carter White House, support had increased to about 25 percent, and held near that point through the mid-1990s. The percentage of Americans who favored making cannabis legal passed 30 percent by 2000, and topped 50 percent by 2009.

Support has vacillated over the past six years, but averaged 48 percent from 2010 through 2012, and has averaged above 56 percent since 2013.

The higher level of support comes as many states and localities are changing, or at least considering changing, their laws on cannabis. So far, four states -- Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Alaska -- have made recreational marijuana use legal, along with the District of Columbia. Ohio voters are set next month to decide a ballot initiative that would do the same thing, albeit in a fashion which hands control of commercial growing to just 10 wealthy investors who are financing the campaign.

U.S.: Baby Boomers Love Weed, and Weedy.com Is Taking Note

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While U.S. marijuana laws change and society retracts itself from previous prohibitionist attitudes, the Baby Boomer generation is consuming cannabis at a higher rate than ever before. As of 2013, 44 percent of adults between ages 50 and 64 reported using marijuana, up from 9 percent in 1985, according to the Gallup Poll.

Weedy.com, a new dispensary discovery website, on Wednesday announced it is following these trends, and is specifically catering to the medical marijuana needs of the baby-boomer generation.

Weedy is the first platform released by Green Web Services, Inc., located in Silicon Valley, founded by Ryan Hunt, Charlyn McNamara, Trang Nguyen and Noosphere Ventures. Focused on consumer education, Weedy allows users to search for doctors, strains, and dispensaries for medical marijuana from any geographic location.

Medical marijuana has previously been stigmatized in the United States, especially amongst Baby Boomers. Weedy was deliberately created to fill the void in the lack of education within the medical marijuana space, and to counter that stigma with information—and an abundance of it. The education-based platform connects patients to dispensaries and provides in-depth information regarding which strains and methods aid various health problems.

U.S.: Majority of Americans Still Support Marijuana Legalization, According to New Gallup Poll

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Poll Conducted Weeks Before Oregon, Alaska and D.C. Voters Decide to Legalize Marijuana

A new Gallup poll has found that a majority of Americans still support the legalization of marijuana. The Gallup poll found a slim majority of Americans -- 51 percent -- favor legalizing the use of marijuana - similar to the 50 percent who supported it in 2011 and 2012, but down from a reading of 58 percent last year.

The poll was conducted in mid-October but released just days after voters in Alaska, Oregon and D.C. voted to legalize marijuana. In Alaska, 52 percent voted in support, in Oregon it was nearly 56 percent and in D.C., the number was a whopping 69 percent.

Building off of the successes of 2014, advocates for marijuana legalization will be putting legalization on multiple ballots in 2016, including California.

D.C.: Marijuana Likely To Be Decriminalized In Nation's Capital

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Firing up a joint in the U.S. capital may soon get you in less trouble than a parking ticket.

Mayor Vincent Gray and 10 of 13 members of the D.C. Council have endorsed a plan to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana; this means cannabis possession would be a civil offense, rather than a criminal offense, reports The Washington Post.

Under the plan, recreational marijuana users won't face arrest, charges or jail, as long as they aren't caught with more than an ounce of pot. Instead, they would have to pay a fine, possibly as low as $25. The mayor also wants criminal penalties to remain in place for those caught smoking weed in public.

A recent report from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) suggests that D.C. and many other places enforce anti-marijuana laws in a racially discriminatory manner, arresting a disproportionate number of African American suspects.

The Washington Post endorsed decrim, saying "Enforcing criminal penalties against those who aren’t involved in trafficking or selling the drug would be too harsh and a waste of government resources."

U.S.: New Gallup Poll Shows 58% of Americans Support Making Marijuana Legal

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A Gallup poll released on Tuesday shows 58 percent of voters nationwide “think the use of marijuana should be made legal.” Only 39 percent of respondents said they do not. Support increased by eight percentage points since Gallup asked the same question in October 2011, at which time it found a record-high 50 percent in favor.

The poll is the first conducted by Gallup since voters in Colorado and Washington approved ballot measures making marijuana legal for adults 21 and older and establishing state-regulated systems of marijuana cultivation and sales. It also comes nearly two months after the U.S. Department of Justice announced it would not interfere in the implementation of those state laws and others that effectively regulate marijuana for medical use.

The national poll of 1,028 registered voters was conducted October 3-6 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent. The full results are available here.

“The dramatically increasing support for making marijuana legal should come as no surprise," said Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). "Marijuana prohibition has been an abject failure. Most Americans realize it is unjust, wasteful, and counterproductive to invest in the criminalization of adults for using a substance that is far less harmful than alcohol.

D.C.: Three Out of Four Voters Want To Remove Criminal Penalties For Marijuana Possession

(Graphic: HighRoulette.com)Nearly two-thirds would support a ballot measure to make marijuana legal for adults and establish a system in which it is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Three out of four Washington, D.C. voters would support changing District law to replace criminal penalties for possession of limited amounts of marijuana with a civil fine similar to a traffic ticket, according to a survey conducted last week by Public Policy Polling. Two-thirds (67 percent) said they believe law enforcement resources currently being used by District police to arrest individuals for marijuana possession should be directed toward other crimes.

The poll also found that nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of District voters would support a ballot measure similar to those approved by voters in Colorado and Washington in November, which made marijuana legal for adults and directed state officials to regulate and tax marijuana similarly to alcohol. A solid majority (54 percent) said drug use should be treated as a public health issue and people should no longer be arrested and locked up for possession of a small amount of any drug for personal use.

The survey of 1,621 randomly selected District voters was conducted April 10-11. The full results and crosstabs are available at http://www.mpp.org/DCpol.

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