For the first time a Field Poll survey of California voters shows that a majority believe marijuana should be legalized and regulated sales to adults with ID should be allowed. A previous poll conducted in 2010 showed a 50 percent split among voters just months before Proposition 19 failed in California.
Only 31 percent of the state opposes legalization.
“For the first time since 1969 when The Field Poll began tracking Californians’ attitudes toward marijuana laws, a clear majority (55 percent) favors its legalization,” surveyors said in their summary. “This subdivides between 8 percent who believe it should be legalized so it can be purchased by anyone and 47 percent who support legalizing it with age and other controls like those for alcohol.”
Field Poll director Mark DiCamillo says that the drastic increase from 30 percent of voters in the early 1980s to a majority today mirrors changes to same-sex marriage laws over the last decade.
“It just seems like an inevitable trend towards the liberalization of the laws,” he told the Sacramento Bee.
That bodes well for legalization measures moving forward, including the three ballot measures that would put the question to voters in 2014. Respondents in the poll were also asked whether they would support a measure to allow adults 21 and up to purchase and consume cannabis, with 56 percent saying they would vote in favor and only 39 percent in opposition.
All three proposed legalization measures have been submitted to the state attorney general’s office, though one measure is merely a placeholder for the Drug Policy Alliance who says they aren’t sure if they’ll move forward with signature gathering yet.
In San Francisco, a whopping 70 percent said they would support legalization measures. The lowest support came from the Central Valley, and even they were at a 50/50 split.
The Field Poll results back Public Polling Institute of California survey results published earlier this fall that showed 52 percent of voters would support marijuana legalization.