Poll: Support for Marijuana Legalization Initiative Growing in Washington

New polling data from SurveyUSA shows growing support for Washington State’s marijuana legalization initiative, I-502.

The new survey found that 55 percent approve of the initiative, with just 32 percent opposed and 13 percent undecided. The poll was conducted from July 16th through 17th and involved 600 likely voters. You can read more about the SurveyUSA poll here. This is a significant upward swing in support for I-502, previous polling in June had only 50% of voters supporting Initiative 502 to 37% opposed.

The Seattle Times is also reporting that initiative proponents plan on kicking off a million dollar advertising campaign in August.

61 thoughts

  1. There are a lot of people who have no desire to smoke pot and doesn’t believe it should be illegal or prohibited by the federal government.
    That and the patients who need medical marijuana are the growing support.

  2. Polls in 2010 had Washington as high as 61% in favor. I think Washington and Colorado both will approve legalization. Colorado is where ALL efforts should be focused, because they have the most in office elected officials supporting the marijuana movement, and they will have the best chance of moving legal matters within the State forward after the win. Winning is just part of the battle. Who has the elected officials willing to move things forward after the win against the FEDS wishes?—I think Colorado will lead the charge. Washington I think will stay back and wait and see what Colorado does first and the Feds reactions. I look for the Feds to send out letters in advance saying that they will arrest anyone who tries to put in place a legal marijuana system that goes against Fed Law…. So, how will it all go?????? What will happen??? No one can be certain, but it will be fun to watch! You can bet that the bubble is about to burst, and something has got to give. I can’t wait until November!!! Go Colorado!!!! Let’s go Washington!!!

  3. Geez! People must be catching on to the futility of prohibition. Nothing like hard times to roll back cruel, needless spending on failing policies.

  4. Some cool trends in the data from the source. Polled voters aged 65+ were 45% for 42% against. Also, the higher educated people were, the more likely they were to support it with only highschool voting 52-40 compared to 4-year college voting 56-29.

    Speaks volumes!

  5. It’s good that support is growing. What do Washingtonians have to look forward if this gets voted in?
    1. decrease in young adult male suicides-research shows a signficant difference in the rate of suicide among young adult males that smoke marijuana.
    2. decrease in abuse of alcohol or hard drugs.
    3. decrease in traffic accident and fatality rate. the numbers are there, not hard to find. Just match up NORML’s state by state marijuana laws with the last 15 years national highway and transportation safety board’s state by state statistics.
    4. decrease of gang violence related to marijuana. I think any of us here can say we’d rather buy from a licensed dealer than some sketchball on the street.
    5. Decrease in adolescent use and access.
    6. decreased incidence of painkiller abuse.
    7. overall decrease in chronic inflammatory related health problems. Cannabis is anti-inflammatory with minimal side effects.

  6. The corrupt, greedy, and uneducated are becoming fewer in numbers. The people will speak eventually and have the final word.I think once full legalization begins in one state there is going to be a landslide against the rest.

  7. Looks like it may just happen there. Hope so. Once one state falls, the rest will surely follow.

  8. Cannabis is more effective than Viagra or Cialis for sexual health. The increase in blood pressure, the stimulation of CB receptors, the relaxing effects, all allow a natural erection to be achieved more easily.

    I only mention this to help change the minds of the old white men keeping this plant illegal, i know everyone else knows of the many benefits of Cannabis.

  9. The Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs opposes the initiative. So do several prominent marijuana-legalization advocates and some in the medical-marijuana industry, who object to a proposed new limit on active THC in the bloodstream, arguing it would effectively criminalize driving by medical-marijuana patients.
    Watson : What they don’t tell you is that it would also work to decrease traffic fatalities .

  10. OK, truthfully folks, i sincerely think that nobody should drive stoned . I also believe the reduction of traffic accidents in States where it is legal or at least medically has something to do with decreasing accidents & fatalities but one thing for sure… stay off the booze . Combining alcohol with anything or even alcoholic beverages by itself often results in deadly consequences .

  11. @chrisw:
    Funny you should say this. When my ex was smoking with me, our sex quadrupled, and our marriage overall improved greatly.

  12. It doesn’t just improve the ability to achieve an erection, it makes sex something to look forward to. I have no problem with that, but her libido w/out cannabis was once or twice a month. With cannabis…through the roof! We’re talking 3, 4, sometime 6 times a WEEK. With heavy consumption, 2 or 3 times same day.

  13. @Fireweed–We could add another thing to your list for what Washingtonians have to look forward to:

    8. Decrease in price.

  14. @chrisvv

    Marijuana is the only true aphrodisiac I’ve ever encountered. As an old white guy, I think my libido would be non-existent without it.

  15. Thank you for the post Erik.

    FWIW –> I-502’s DUI standard, while scientifically inaccurate, will likely get amended within the first two years from calls from the cannabis industry (which will just have had a nod of recognition by the People); and, while drivers that consume marijuana hours before will still be at risk of prosecution for the time being, exercising due care while operating any machinery is the best way of avoiding any incident with police. Again, FWIW.

    Thank you for the post!

  16. Weed is safer than ALL other drugs. It’s safer than food. Eating 24-7’ll get you a heart attack. Smoking Weed 24-7 won’t do shit except make life ideal. You’ll just have a bigger tolerance than Snoop Dogg does, though. I mean seriously, if weed was legal this country would be perfect. The only other drugs I’d legalize would be Mushrooms, LSD, and Mescaline. God, I’d be careful with those even, though. Pot legal would be good enough. Poke Smot!

  17. and an increase in tourism. Look for me to be getting off a plane in Seattle soon if this passes.

  18. @Watson
    not all alcohol use leads to death and/or a ruined life. I have been drinking since the ripe young age of 13, and I am alive and well, with no record. Anything can be used, and anything can be abused. Alcohol is no exception I know, but neither is pot. The key is being responsible with whatever substance you choose to ingest.

  19. det.watson
    i understand your feeling about huffin and then driving.but , in defence of cannabis, i have done some of the safest, focused yet, relaxed driving while only consuming a small amount of cannabis for most of my 30 years of consuming.i have had more ‘mishaps’ while not consuming.this stuff just seems to fill a small space in my head and, i would gladly not drive if it meant i could include cannabis once again in my personal life…just to let you know my friend, we have all seen too much killing and personal destruction wherever alcohol is concerned.have a great day

  20. There is only one thing standing in the way of legalization – GREED! Think about it, who stands to lose big money?
    1. Mexican cartels – they only have to smuggle a few of their minion across our Cal. border to rape our national forests and let the rest take care of itself.
    2. Pharmaceutical Companies – they’re making a ‘killing’ off the aging boomers (of whom I am one)
    3. Alcohol Companies – most women would much rather buy the old man a pack of ‘green’ than a bottle of ‘old rot gut’.
    4. Tobacco Companies – pot is sooo much safer than tobacco.
    5. Big Farming Corporations that are running family farms out of business. Industrial hemp could save them.
    6. Oil Companies – Industrial hemp could be used for fuel, plastics, and clothing.
    7. POLITICIANS who take money from Oil Companies, Big Farming Corps, Tobacco Companies, Alcohol Companies, Pharmaceutical Companies, and (God I hope I’m wrong about this) Mexican Drug Cartels.

  21. Hi Erik:

    I know a co-founder of a DC political startup, Popvox.

    If NORML has a bill they want to get passed in Congress, Popvox makes it easy for your supporters to write to Congress without leaving your website.

    You could get everyone that goes to NORML.org to help you get bills passed in Congress…without ever having to leave your site.

    Please email me if you want me to introduce you to her

  22. @CrazyOlLady

    I’ve suspected the collusion between the Drug Cartels and politicians for some time. Like you, I just can’t bring myself to really believe it.

    It sure is funny, though, how the only people to really see any return on our drug war spending are the drug mafias. And now with Citizens United, millions of dollars can be funneled into our political campaign war chests without ever identifying where the money came from.

  23. This is such a sad situation. I have watched our system at work for over 50 years. One thing I’ve learned is the truth has little to do with anything. It’s the dollar and political power that win. And unfortunately More is gained by those seeking money and power by not legalizing. My advice is grow at home and tell nobody. The republicans will be back sooner or later and will come after those who that played off their watch.

  24. Before I say what I want to say let me first state that I agree with marijuana legalization and that I will be voting YES for I-502. That being said, I don’t believe that it, or any other state initiative to legalize, will really change things. At least not immediately. If 502 does get voted in our Governor still has the option to not sign it. Gov. Gregoire has already proven herself to be utterly spineless when it comes to standing up to the Federal Government. She completely backed down on the crises we suffered here with medicinal cannabis dispensaries. She said that she wouldn’t sign into law anything that would, or could, place state employees in the position of violating federal law. She then did nothing when the feds came knocking on the doors of all of the dispensaries here in Spokane and the vast majority of dispensaries in Seattle. There may still be a few dispensaries operating in Seattle I don’t know for sure but quite honestly, that isn’t the point. The point is, through her actions (or rather her INACTIONS) we can already see what will happen if 502 passes. Granted, I am still going to vote for it and hopefully if it passes it will at the very least send a message that yes, this is truly what the people want but… don’t get your hopes up that you will be soon be able to buy a pack of joints at the local “pot store”. This is a very VERY uphill battle and I guess I just wanted to say we need to be prepared to keep fighting. Perhaps a letter-writing campaign to the Gubernatorial candidates wouldn’t be a bad idea. Something along the lines of “If 502 passes we the people EXPECT YOU to carry out our wishes as expressed by our votes, sign the damn thing and tell the feds to go **** themselves.” This truly is a States Rights issue after all. Anyway, guess I just wanted to throw my 2 cents out there. Have a great day!

  25. I can’t grow at home. I’m in HUD housing so they do random inspections and pork choppers fly by at any time. I have to pay big bucks and get not a good deal in return to smoke, which I’m out of now. Unless something bad happens to support legalization, it might be hopeless to ever get fair freedom. We need to cause a stink. This is already at ridiculous. But we can expect more of the same if we do nothing.

  26. That graph should totally look like this: [IMG]http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp263/skatetrix72/wapoll.png[/IMG] Cannabis being red seems negative, when the no’s are the negative…but maybe the people that can’t read graphs are most likely prohibitionists, will glance at it and say, legalizing pot? Oh, the graph is red so I don’t have to go vote no. 😉

  27. We could win if a lot of people started speaking up about it-but who wants to? Talking positively about cannabis on TV might trigger a search warrant raid at your house where the pot is. It’s kind of like we have freedom of speech but we don’t on matters such as this. They’re not invincible, they will die, and DAMMIT they will NOT beat us. We’re making the decision to not lose. We need people with nuts to trip this into a full-scale country debate. The US government isn’t invincible. Maybe to other countrys but not to itself. I’m going to post this on several other forums.

  28. “Every country ’round the world,
    The people smoke the herb,
    Prohibition is absurd
    The people want it..”

  29. @Bradson… Unfortunately, the cost of marijuana will actually increase in price if I-502 is passed… They plan on dispeensing it in a liquer store-type setting, and the price is going to be set at $13/G… Idk if that will include taxes or not, but as it stands about now, that is about $364 an ounce… Most medical MJ dispensaries are charging about $8-12 a gram now, and even if you charge $20 for 1.5G’s, yoi’re looking at $360 an ounce, which is WAY too expensive in my opinion… Now, as for the comment made about MJ helping with obtaining an erection, numerous studies have shown that MJ actually LOWERS blood pressure, not raises it… As a matter of fact, WA state residents can use hypertension as part of their qualifying conditions to obtain a medical marijuana authorization. MJ also helps level off blood sugar, and is excellent for reducing inflammation in patients with inflammation diseases and/or health problems… I have my Med MJ Auth because I have GERD, as well as Chondromalasia Patella, and my meniscus is torn in 2 different places, and I’m allergic to non-steroid anti-inflammatory medications, and MJ is my personal savior when it comes to reducing pain, swelling, and inflammation in my knee, nothing works better and I HIGHly recommend it!
    There’s alot of debate in the medical MJ community in WA state about whether MJ should be legalized for recreational use for adults 21 and older, but in my opinion, I’m on the fence about the whole thing, and tgere’s a few ligitimate reasons behind me saying that… First off, I feel thhat MJ should only be fully legalized for MEDICINAL USE ONLY, and given full access to Medical Marijuana Patients ONLY. Med MJ Patients should be able to grow as much as they’d like, obtain as much as they like, and distribute it as much as they like, as long as it is to other Med MJ Patients ONLY. I feel dispensaries should NOT be allowed to an established business, and it would have a “every patient for themselves” type stance, meaning, no one patient, oor group of patients can set up a dispensary, and monopolize the Med MJ community. If you can’t grow it, you should be able to have another patiebt grow it for you, and/or you can buy your meds from that patient, or any patient that has MJ availible, as long as both patients are ligit Med MJ Authorized. Keep the cultivation and distrubution in the hands of the patients who need the profits, not Medical EXCUSE MJ Patients, who are getting Med MJ Auth’s just to make money from it. The majority of Med MJ Patients are either on welfare, or on Social Security, with minimally-fixed monthly incomes that leaves them at the bottom of the poverty level, and these patients are the ones who deserve to be profiting from MJ, NOT dispensaries and/or the Gov’t.
    As for legalizing MJ for recreational use, tthat is NOT the way to go about getting MJ legalized Federally AT ALL!!! What needs to be done here is, as I said before, give the full legalization to the Medical MJ Patients, and DECRIMINALIZE MJ for adults to use recreationally. What this would do is show the Fed Gov’t what decriminalization would do for our state, eliminating the criminal aspect of MJ possession, reduce the charges to a civil infraction (similar to a parking ticket), abd it would keep the pricing the same (not MORE expensive, as forecasted by the WA State Gov’t), reduce crime substancially, and keep it in the hands of the little guy… I’m always hering about hhow everyone wants marijuana legal so the can get stoned without worrying about getting in trouble for it, but making intoxication narcotics legal for recreational use is never a good thing. Don’t get me wrong, I support I-502, just becuse it’s the closest thing to decriminalization in the ballot, but if we had the choice between a legalization measure, and a decriminalization measure, I’d go decrim ALL THE WAY!!! I’m not comparing MJ to alcohol (and I absolutely HATE that reasoning for legalizing MJ, as the “2 wrongs make a right” defense), but we’ve alll seen the devistating effect that alcohol has had on our society negitively, and I would hate to see MJ get legalized, have a bunch of negitive problems arise due to it being lefal, just to give the Fed Gov’t more fuel for their fire, but decriminalization would cancel that alll out…

    [Editor’s note: This is a lot of verbiage to declare that you plan to vote with the cops, pee testers, alcohol/tobacco/pill companies and drug rehabbers to reject legalization of cannabis in WA, and that you favor continuing the expensive and damaging policies of arresting, prosecuting and incarcerating citizens who have cannabis–who don’t claim a ‘medical’ need for the herb.

    OK…your choice to be on the wrong side of the law and history.

    But for the vast majority of cannabis consumers in WA–including those who seek medical access–legalized cannabis is much preferred to the totally unsustainable status quo of Prohibition.]

  30. Any step toward legalization is a good step. Price’s are set by supply and demand and competitors will price accordingly, once the measure passes and gains time.

    Never mind the fear mongering and long winded posts,(which makes me think some one has some stake in keeping things as they are…remember the prop 19 dissenters spreading the same nonsense?) Just vote YES…details and changes can be hammered out once it passes into law. Just be concerned with passing it into law first.

  31. Any step toward legalization is a good step. Price’s are set by supply and demand and competitors will price accordingly, once the measure passes and gains time.

    Never mind the fear mongering and long winded posts,(which makes me think some one has some stake in keeping things as they are…remember the prop 19 dissenters spreading the same nonsense?) Just vote YES…details and changes can be hammered out once it passes into law. Just be concerned with passing it into law first.

  32. We, myself included, have to start sending NORML money. I am going to start with what I can afford,like $10 a month. It isn’t much only $120 a year. When I get some of my credit cards paid off, I will increase it. I am working on getting a house, and I help my daughter with my grand-kids. But I am going to work it into my budget some how.I figure they deserve it. After all,where would we be with out NORML. That is the way I am going to support our cause. Who is going to follow my lead by donating at least $10 a month? If the 33 people on this blog would just send in $10 a month, it would add up to $3960.00 a year.

  33. @YourRoyalHIGHness:

    The luxury that you have as a MM patient,being able to go to a dispensary and having the choice of the right strain for your specific
    ailment’s is a privilege that was obtained by people getting off their ass’s and VOTING!.
    From what information i have read recently,is that they(the government) in the next few years, want to put medical patients on $ativex.You will no longer have cannabis in it’s natural form,so if you think your in some sort of protected bubble(as a MM patient) free from change and intrusion you are sadly mistaken.
    And yes,there is a lesson to be learned from what happened to prop 19 in California.
    During that time there was an effort made to convince MM patient’s that their rights would change under the new guidlines of prop 19.
    Many patients and dispensary growers voted no for these reasons,and guess what? after prop 19 lost by a very thin margin,THAT is when the Feds came in and made their move against the legal dispensaries, way harder than before…and it’s been escalating ever since.
    What you have to realise is that if this initiative in Washington passes,at first it will be a symbolic victory.a statement made about the will and the desires of the people.It will take years to be fully implemented in the same way that prop 215 did(the one that started the medical marijuana ball rolling.It didn’t happen over night.

    So please, don’t feel so smug and protected in your medical marijuana cocoon,and also feel free to learn the lesson about what happened in California, you are not invulnerable

  34. I don’t know why on earth there are so many opponents of this. Think about it.

    Tobacco – They know it’s on the way out. There are now THC-free strains, and it won’t cause cancer. There’s the new cigarette.
    Alcohol – THC can be extracted and put into liquid and flavored. You get “drunk” without the threat of liver damage or addiction. There’s the new booze.
    Oil – Grow a few thousand acres of hemp just for the seeds – there’s your new $1 gallon of gas.
    Lumber and paper – All the forests are disappearing, and soon they will be left without their main resource.
    Pharma – Sativex pretty much explains this one.

    Why all these industries are against legalization, I’ll never know. If I were in charge of one of these industries, I’d have big flipping $$ in my eyeballs and go after it.

    They are so stupid to not want to use it.

  35. Hold the phone, St. Nick. I don’t think anybody here is pushing for legal LSD and mescaline. Some of your comments are giving ammo to the prohibitionists…they also do not differentiate between cannabis and other drugs…hence the schedule 1 status.

    Would it be so criminal to just pay my county courthouse $2400/yr. (or a comparable amount) for my growing license to be hung on the wall of my growroom or fenced and secure backyard, which would allow for inspection by the police if I was suspected of distribution for payment??

  36. @ Galileo…don’t be fooled. The DEA and the cartels are hand-in-hand buddies and the only ones left that both agree fully on continued cannabis prohibition. And in the meantime confiscated drug monies are laundered into our financial sector, which is nothing new.

    We all realize that a regulated cannabis industry would provide jobs in ‘hard times’ but it is that same sentiment, jobs in hard times, that will keep the drug war flourishing. Unfortunately it is one of the few things left driving our economy now that most business CEO’s have chosen hundreds of millions worth of company stock at the expense of the meager wages earned by the workers that built their company.


  37. I have started to meet more and more people who are not smokers of cannabis but still see the promising results it brings to those who are in need. It just shows people are starting to see what is going on with Medical Marijuana as it saves lives everyday!

  38. Norml should organize a million man march on Washington. More Occupy movements. Civil rights happened when drugs were first being used on a wide scale scope. People who used drugs in 60s wanted peace and love. Manson tried to ruin that. And the evil people in charge are still trying that, but they will not win. They are hypocritical cowards who are actually weak. Fear is their weapon. But you can’t keep a good thing down. Use love to defeat fear and happiness to beat hate. TOGETHER we WILL win. Go go marijuana legalization!

  39. If americans during the prohabition would have known all the many kinds of marijuana, the bad things about alcohol & how everything turned out now. Not only would people have united in the fight for marijuana legalization but they would have burned every still & Al Capone & his men would have turned themselves in to the police for protection from America.

  40. i have been waiting for this now for 40 yrs. Im taking my tee pes and moving to the frist state that pass there bill. im going to reg. to vote and give all my time , to fight the fight with the feds. if you would do the same we can and will win. peace

  41. Unfortunately, we do not live in a true democracy. What the people want is way different from what the people are allowed to have. I was a teenager in the 60s. I saw horrific things happening around me, all legal. We changed a lot of them, but this is a tough fight. The politicians have so much to lose. It is my dream to live long enough to be able to go to a nearby store and purchase my marijuana. Even though I live in California where you supposedly can purchase Medical Marijuana legally, it’s not happening. I have to drive an hour to the nearest dispensary (State legal) or make a phone call and get it delivered (State illegal). Both are Federal crimes.
    Come on politicians, you can’t fool all the people forever, it is nature’s perfect plant – perfect medicine, perfect fuel, perfect fiber, perfect food, etc

  42. As a washington voter, i am for legalization. Hoever, no law is perfectand issues must be worked out. After reading the entire law, the pitfalls are the exorbitant taxation on three levels of distribution, which constitutes a VAT of 25 percent at eac level. So the price of weed at the retil level will go higher, most likely 50 per cent higher in the short term. With increases in supply, we may see some decrease in price but that may not happen as fast as most people think.

    The law does not allow home growers with a 1250 initial registration / license fee and annual 1000 bucks a year license fee/per location. Pencilling this deal out may not make sense unless you have a barn to grow in.

    In addition, the law rwquires notification of an applicant’s license in the city you live which can be objected to by the city. A lawyers dream here

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