A nationwide Gallup poll shows that 68% of respondents favor cannabis legalization – tying the highest percentage of support reported to date.
“As was the case in 2020, solid majorities of U.S. adults in all major subgroups by gender, age, income and education support legalizing marijuana,” Gallup pollsters wrote.
Gallup first surveyed the question in 1969, when only twelve percent of Americans backed marijuana legalization. After California became the first state to legalize medicinal cannabis in 1996, support for adult-use marijuana rose to 25%. After Washington and Colorado became the first two states to legalize adult-use marijuana in 2012, legalization has had majority support since the following year.
“In the era of state-level legalization, voters’ support for this issue has grown rapidly — an indication that these policy changes have been successful and are comporting with voters’ desires and expectations,” said Erik Altieri, NORML’s Executive Director. “Today, voters of every age and in virtually every region of the country agree that marijuana should be legal. We have a mandate from the American people, and we intend to make sure that elected officials abide by it.”
The prospect of federal legalization remains tantalizingly out of reach. If public sentiment can translate into political activism, things could change. According to the poll, 83% of Democrats and 71% of political independents support marijuana legalization. Republicans are divided down the middle – 50 percent in favor; 49 percent opposed.