Support Stays Strong for Pot Legalization, but Not for Harder Drugs

A clear majority of voters (64%) believe marijuana should be legalized in America like cigarettes, while 36% disagree. That’s according to a new national survey.

But in the same poll, only 11% of respondents supported the idea of legalizing cocaine (see question wording and crosstabs).

This survey of 1,000 Registered Voters was conducted for on October 7-8, 2018 by HarrisX, a leading research firm specializing in online surveys (see Methodology). The statistical margin of error is +/- 3.1 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

The poll showed attitudes unchanged from a similar poll conducted on August 20-21, 2018. A poll for the Deseret News found that 64% of Utah voters favor a medical marijuana initiative on the ballot this November.

Majority support for legalization holds up across almost every age and ethnic group in this latest poll. Men (66%) are slightly more likely to support marijuana legalization than women (62%), while the strongest support for legalization comes from younger voters aged 18-49.

Overall, 70% of respondents say marijuana legalization would either improve the problems related with drug abuse in America or not have any effect at all. 31% says those problems would get worse.

On this question, younger voters remain consistently more optimistic about the idea of legalization. 41% of respondents aged 18-34 say legalizing marijuana would make things better while just 26% say it would make things worse.

Again, those attitudes do not seem to extend to harder drugs. In the August poll, voters were asked about the effects of legalizing marijuana and cocaine. On that question, 36% of respondents aged 18-39 said doing that would make America’s drug problems worse and only 29% said it would make them better.

As the midterm elections draw close, voters in several states will have a chance to weigh in on ballot initiatives that call for some increased forms of marijuana legalization (see a full list of states and initiatives).

All of our data is presented to enhance the public dialogue through data-driven analysis that explores the underlying currents of public opinion (read About Us). See all of our polling data releases.

Neither Scott Rasmussen nor has any relationship with Rasmussen Reports® (see About Us).

Posted in Poll Results

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