Hamden, CT: The majority of voters in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania support permitting adults to possess marijuana legally, and super-majorities in all three states endorse allowing doctors to recommend cannabis therapy, according to survey data published April 6 by Quinnipiac University.
Fifty-five percent of Florida voters say they support allowing adults "to legally possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use." (Forty-two percent oppose the idea.) In Ohio, voters back legalization by a margin of 52 percent to 44 percent. In Pennsylvania, 51 percent of voters favor legalizing marijuana versus 45 percent who oppose doing so.
Voters’ sentiment in favor of legalizing the plant’s availability for therapeutic purposes is even stronger. Pollsters reported that voters in all three states back medical marijuana legalization by margins of five to one: 84 percent to 14 percent in Florida, 84 percent to 15 percent in Ohio, and 88 percent to 10 percent in Pennsylvania.
Legislation seeking to regulate the plant’s use and retail sale is pending in both Florida and Pennsylvania, though to date, lawmakers have yet to hold hearings on either bill. Legislation to permit regulatory access to medical cannabis is also pending in both states.
In Ohio, a ballot initiative that seeks to legalize the limited, commercial production and retail sale of the plant is anticipated to appear on the 2105 ballot. In Florida, proponents of an unsuccessful 2014 ballot drive are expected to file a constitutional amendment in 2016 to legalize the therapeutic use of the plant.
For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, at (202) 483-5500.