steve koczela

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Massachusetts: New Poll Shows Marijuana Legalization Winning

Massachusetts pot.jpg

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A new statewide poll of likely voters shows that 50 percent support the marijuana legalization measure this November in Massachusetts.

Question 4 would allow adults over 21 to cultivate, possess, and use marijuana, and sets up a regulatory structure under a Cannabis Control Board.

Forty-five percent in the WBUR/MassINC poll are opposed to legalization and five percent are undecided.

The poll of 506 likely voters took place between September 7 and September 10.

"Younger people are very much in favor of legalization, and it declines steadily as you move up the age brackets to where you get to voters who are 60-plus, and they're opposed to it by a 17-point margin," Steve Koczela, president of the MassINC Polling Group, told WBUR.

Eighty percent of respondents in the poll said they did not believe pot use is morally wrong. Fourteen percent said they did. Six percent are undecided or just don't know.

When asked what they thought was most harmful to a person's health, 42 percent said tobacco, 19 percent said alcohol, 13 percent said sugar ,and 4 percent said marijuana.

Massachusetts decriminalized small amounts of marijuana in 2008 through a ballot measure, and made medical marijuana legal the same way in 2012..

Massachusetts: Advocates Lay Groundwork For Marijuana Legalization


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Marijuana advocates are laying the groundwork for legalization in Massachusetts in 2016, the next presidential election year.

State voters approved decriminalization of small amounts of cannabis in 2008, and legalized its use for medicinal purposes in 2012, both with more than 63 percent support, reports Joshua Miller at the Boston Globe. advocates have launched an effort to get legalization on the 2016 ballot, and to raise enough money to ensure victory.

But some say Massachusetts' strong traditions will make legal marijuana a tough sell.

"To make it available for recreational use, that's going over a very different barrier," said state Rep. Ellen Story (D-Amherst), explaining it was easy for her to support decrim and medical marijuana, but not legalization. "I'm not sure people in the state are ready for that and I'm certainly not sure I'm ready for that."

But the tides of public opinion are shifting on cannabis.

"Opinion is changing very quickly on marijuana," said Steve Koczela, president of MassINC Polling Group. The rapid change, he said, "mirrors, in some ways, the same-sex marriage shift that's taken place over the last few years."

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