Gallup Poll Finds 58% of Americans Favor Legalizing Marijuana
According to a new Gallup poll, 58 percent of Americans support legalizing marijuana—the largest percentage ever in that survey. “Success at the ballot box in the past year in Colorado and Washington may have increased Americans’ tolerance for marijuana legalization,” Gallup says. “Support for legalization has jumped 10 percentage points since last November and the legal momentum shows no sign of abating.”
Gallup’s survey asks, “Do you think the use of marijuana should be made legal, or not?” That leaves open the question of whether commercial production and distribution should be legal as well (as in Colorado and Washington). But other national polls that go beyond marijuana consumption also have found majority support for legalization. In a Reason-Rupe survey last January, for example, 53 percent of respondents said “the government should treat marijuana the same as alcohol.” And last month a Public Policy Polling survey in Texas found that 58 percent of respondents either “somewhat” or “strongly” supported “changing Texas law to regulate and tax marijuana similarly to alcohol, where stores would be licensed to sell marijuana to adults 21 and older.” The latter finding was especially striking given the state’s conservative reputation.