Friday, March 31, 2017

Will the U.S. Legalize Marijuana? Panel at National Polling Conference

The 2016 election was good for the legalization of marijuana. Four more states, including California, legalized recreational marijuana. The American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) May national conference will host a panel of leading national pollsters to examine the evolution of public opinion toward marijuana legalization. The change in opinion during the last few decades has been rapid, but there are still groups within the public highly resistant to the spread of legalization. I will chair a panel offering a series of papers describing the depth of that change nationally and within the key states of California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington.

Panel Description: Marijuana and Public Opinion Change

Recreational marijuana is on the move around the country. It was approved in four states in 2016 by mostly narrow votes and now is legal in states with more than 60 million people, or about 20 percent of the country. Pollsters will describe the shift in opinion favoring legalization, some of the future opportunities and road blocks it may face, and status of public opinion in states that approved it in 2012.

After Legalization, It’s Time to Change the Question
Floyd Ciruli, Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research

A substantial majority of Colorado voters remain steadfast in their support for the legalization of recreational marijuana. But, there are numerous signs of stress and public resistance to its spread across communities and through the commercial process of manufacture to sale. Polling to capture the stress and in communities resisting its spread recommends different questions from those developed pre-legislation.

Other Panelists and Presentations:

Evolution of Opinion About Marijuana Legalization in the Northwest, Stuart Elway, Elway Research

Legalize it! Examining the Predictors of Support for Marijuana Legalization in California, Lunna Lopes, Public Policy Institute of California

Trends in U.S. Marijuana Attitudes and Use, 1969-2016, Zac Auter and Jeff Jones, Gallup

Which States are Next to Legalize Marijuana – 50 State Survey, Sarah Cho, SurveyMonkey

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