Is it finally NOT fake news?
The percent of the public who are for federal cannabis legalization in the U.S. is growing every year, and even conservative media outlets like Fox News have come around to reporting this. A Fox News poll reported that 59% of respondents supported legalization, while only 32% said they opposed legalization. This data was preceded by two other polls, the results being an even 50% for legalization in 2014, and a 46% minority back in 2013.
Democratic and Republican research firms conducted phone interviews with roughly 1,000 registered voters across the country at the end of last month. When split into demographics, the poll reported 68% of Democrats and 67% of independents supported legalization, compared to 46% of Republicans. Younger voters were more likely to support legalization, with 72% of millennials voicing their support, versus 60% of Gen X-ers and 52% of baby boomers. The majority of those who reject legalization are still conservative voters and white evangelical Christians, but even opposition by these groups has fallen by15% over the past five years.
“This is a massive shift in opinion over a very short period. As more states legalize marijuana without the negative consequences opponents have warned about, support will likely continue to increase,” said Chris Anderson, one of the directors of the poll, to Fox News. “When you look at the growing percentage of people who say they support legalizing marijuana, especially among those under 30 years of age, it’s obvious why the Democrats are anxious to get pot initiatives on the ballot in statewide elections.”
Fox News' poll results closely match the results of the Pew Research Center's most recent survey on cannabis legalization. Pew found that 61% of Americans supported legal weed, with legalization support from 70% of millennials, 66% of Gen Xers, and 43% of Republicans. A Gallup poll from last October also found similar results, with 64% of respondents backing legal cannabis.
The extremely similar poll results from politically diverse sources confirm that the majority of Americans want to see decades-old cannabis laws come to an end. Now that even Fox News has affirmed this reality, the Trump administration should be forced to recognize that their attempts to revive the war on cannabis are opposed by a clear majority of the American people.