Poll: Six Out Of Ten Americans Support Retail Marijuana Sales In Colorado

More than six out of ten Americans – including majorities of self-identified Democrats, Independents, and Republicans – support the regulation and retail sale of marijuana in Colorado, according to the findings of a nationwide HuffPost.com/YouGov poll released today.

Colorado voters in 2012 approved a statewide initiative legalizing the personal consumption and cultivation of the plant. The measure also allows for the state-licensed commercial production and retail sales of cannabis to those over the age of 21. Commercial cannabis sales began on January 1st of this year. To date, these sales have generated nearly $11 million in tax revenue.

Sixty-one percent of Americans – including 68 percent of Democrats, 60 percent of Independents, and 52 percent of Republicans – say they “support” Colorado’s efforts to regulate the commercial cannabis market. Only 27 percent of respondents oppose the Colorado law.

Respondents between the ages of 18 and 29 (65 percent) as well as those age 65 and older (64 percent) were most likely to support Colorado’s efforts, while those between the ages of 45 to 65 (55 percent) were less likely to do so.

The results of a separate poll of Colorado voters commissioned by Quinnipiac University in April similarly reported that most Coloradoans support the state’s efforts to regulate marijuana sales and consumption.

Similarly licensed commercial retail sales of cannabis began last week in Washington state.

In response to a separate HuffPost/YouGov poll question, 54 percent of those surveyed said that the US government should not enforce federal anti-marijuana laws in states that have legalized and regulated the plant. Only 29 percent of respondents endorsed the notion of enforcing federal prohibition in states that are pursuing alternative regulatory schemes.

“Every day in America, hundreds of thousands of people engage in transactions involving the recreational use of marijuana, but only in two states – Colorado and Washington – do these transactions take place in a safe, above-ground, state-licensed facility where consumers must show proof of age, the product sold is of known quality, and the sales are taxed in a manner to help fund necessary state and local services,” NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano said. “Not surprisingly, most Americans prefer to have cannabis regulated in this sort of legal setting as opposed to an environment where the plant’s production and sale is entirely unregulated and those who consume it are stigmatized and classified as criminals.”

Complete poll results are available online here.

11 thoughts

  1. Now we need to work to increase that percentage. I think many of the individuals who oppose what has taken place in Colorado are exceedingly ignorant in regards to the scientific facts about marijuana. In my experience discussing the topic with people, I would say four points need to be stressed more than anything:

    1 – Unlike alcohol that kills thousands of people a year, you cannot die of an overdose of marijuana.

    2 – Unlike alcohol, marijuana does not kill brain cells and can even protect them via multiple mechanisms such as lowering oxidative stress, reducing inflammation, and breaking up the amyloid plaques in Alzheimers patients.

    3 – Marijuana has less physical addiction than caffeine. No one can become physically hooked to pot like they can alcohol.

    4 – If you oppose marijuana legalization but do not call for a ban on alcohol, you are a total, complete hypocrite.

    I honestly believe that out of ten prohibitionists we could convert two or three by showing the scientific evidence that proves marijuana Iis far safer than alcohol. The others are either old and totally set in their belief or are theocrats who think all things sinful should be banned.

  2. Hey NORML, I remember full well the 2009 convention in San Francisco. I stayed at the Hyatt on Stockton Street where it was held. You guys are the very best.

    The reason I am writing you is that I would like for you to get in touch with Attorney General Holder. I feel that he is ready to sit down with NORML and discuss a viable cannabis legalization plan at the federal level. The timing is right. You guys had all the answers back in 2009 and I’m sure you’re way ahead now.

    Thank you,

    Walker Richardson, Richmond, Virginia

  3. Weed the people,
    No more sheeple.
    It’s time to rise,
    Politicians open your eyes,
    Enough of the lies,
    Listen to the peoples cries,
    Get rid of the disguise.
    It’s a new day, a new way,
    Weed is here to stay.
    It’s time for a rebirth,
    To heal planet earth

  4. After watching so many friends and family members have their lives destroyed by the BS War on Drugs, it is so nice to finally see a country begin to come to its senses when it comes to marijuana. Finally!

  5. i’ve entered so many replies. where is ohio, when it comes to state polling? when i read about the absured things that go on! this is the thing, i’ve seen people smoking for 40 some years. professionals and down . i’ve lived in 4 states and 2 countries. no change! no matter where i was. it’s not going to stop! we the people, are many, we are everyone, being silenced by the big $ generating machine, that feeds on our fear and ignorance, and i don’t mean that i an unpolite way. but i’ve even been getting quite an education from reading all the posts. it’s where we should have been in the late 60’s, early 70’s. where i went to school with many colors and there was openess and happines. but the politicians brought about the change, brewed the hate and distrust to feed the monster. still going on! funny how the education programs took away the free thought through team thinking, took out arts and music, no $? where is all the $ from all drug busts and property seizurs ie “rico”. the criminal machine, the cops and their jobs, (might actually be able to do real police work)! dea could be border guards rather than terrorizing normal folks. vape, vote, hope,and peace

  6. 52% of Republicans. Very, very good news, indeed. We need to get these folks on board with reform, or they’ll fight us every inch of the way.

  7. why don’t you get a state by state class action lawsuit where marijuana isn’t decriminalized yet for discrimination we are all free tax paying americans just like those in Colorado and Washington its not equal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    [Editor’s note: 1) Numerous petitions and hearings for class action lawsuits have already been attempted by NORML and other reform groups, notably with medical cannabis patients almost gaining class action status in a Philadelphia federal court, arguing that the then seven patients in the closed Compassionate IND program (who receive 300 pre-rolled joints a month of medical cannabis for free provided by the taxpayers through NIDA…grown under exclusive contract at the U of MS/Oxford since the late 1970s) create a legal and health double standard and due process concerns), 2) No state or federal judge, and later if necessary appellate court, will affirm a class action lawsuit where the grievance is: ‘the state legislature has not passed a preferred bill by a group of people wanting X or Y social change’, and 3) courts are historically poor places for cannabis law reformers to find any real legal relief, with judges pitching the political hot potato back to legislatures. Reformers have far better track record for moving pubic policy from prohibition to reform via binding voter ballot initiatives (in the approx. 22 states that allow them) and through conventional legislation.

    Voters in Alaska and Oregon have a chance this fall to join Colorado and Washington as ‘legalization’ states and Florida voters need to pass a medical cannabis ballot initiative by 60% or more to take legal effect.

    At the most localized level, a number of cities in MI this fall will ask voters to approve or reject cannabis decrim. ballot initiatives.]

  8. Please don’t hate for the question I’m about to ask because I really feel for the parents of the girls with seizures in Iowa, but what is discrimination? The medication I take is alprazolam for a serious case of anxiety,and I know this isn’t seizures but it is a medical issue which requires medication in which marijuana works better and doesn’t have so many side effects and the label on the bottle certainly says use caution with heavy machinery and they still let you drive a car on this alprazolam. I do believe if marijuana was legal I would not need this man made product.discriminated!

  9. Char, you’re not supposed to be on alprazolam long term. It is only safe to take it for the short term because it is very addictive and also rather toxic. Your doctor should be talking with you about a different, less fucked up drug you can you longer term.

    Seems like there are layers bad ideas here. First, why is there any marijuana discrimination? The only answer I have is: people are assholes. Not very satisfying of an answer is it? Just a good excuse to act like prick!!!

    Your doctor knows he/she is supposed to be proscribing alprazolam for short term traumas, not for general anxiety!

    And yes, drugged people are all over this country and the police are still worrying over people that are marijuana’ed being out in public, when there are a lot of drugs that actually mess people up and that is somehow Okay… Not that it shouldn’t be, but why the hate for marijuana and marijuana users? And not for what it would be appropriate targets?

Leave a Reply