Roughly seven in 10 adults surveyed recently said that marijuana use should be legal, including most Republicans, Democrats and independents, polling data from Quinnipiac University showed Thursday.
Quinnipiac said the nationwide poll, done April 8 through 12, involved asking 1,237 adults, specifically: “Do you think that the use of marijuana should be made legal in the United States, or not?”
Numbers released by Quinnipiac showed that, among all respondents asked if marijuana use should be legal, 69% said yes, 25% said no and 6% either said they were unsure or did not answer the question.
After nearly a decade of Quinnipiac asking about the issue, the results of its latest survey indicate that support for legalizing marijuana use in the U.S. is the highest the pollster has ever seen.
Quinnipiac has polled Americans regularly about marijuana use since 2012, the same year voters in Colorado and Washington made their states the first in the country to pass measures legalizing pot.
At the time, 51% of registered voters polled said they supported legalizing marijuana use and 44% opposed it; subsequent polling in 2019 found support for legalization among voters had climbed to 60%.
Multiple states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana since 2012. The plant remains illegal under federal law, however, notwithstanding several failed legislative efforts to reverse course.
“There is no buyer’s remorse on the part of the American people,” said Erik Altieri, the executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, better known as NORML.
“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,” Mr. Altieri said in a statement.
The results of the latest polling, as released by Quinnipiac, show that a majority of Americans on either side of the political spectrum are in support of legalizing the use of marijuana nationwide.
Among respondents identified as Republicans, 62% said that yes, marijuana use should be legal, compared to 32% who said no and 6% who said they were unsure or did not answer, according to Quinnipiac.
Respondents identified as Democrats overwhelmingly said they support legalization, meanwhile. Quinnipiac said that 78% of Democrats answered yes, 17% answered no and 4% were unsure or did not answer.
Among respondents identified as independents, 67% said that marijuana use should be legal, compared to 28% who said no and 5% who said they were unsure or did not answer, according to Quinnipiac.
Quinnipiac said there is a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.8% when considering all 1,237 adults most recently surveyed. The margin of error for the subgroups was not immediately known.