Personal Use of Marijuana Gains Support

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Marijuana SupportColumbus — More than half of Ohio voters support the personal use of marijuana by adults with support soaring to 90 percent for just medical purposes, according to a Quinnipiac Poll released today.

These questions of support were posed generally to registered voters in presidential swing states Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida and did not ask voters specifically about the legalization and commercialization ballot issue on which Ohioans are already voting for the Nov. 3 election.

Issue 3 would legalize marijuana for recreational and medical purposes and would build a new wholesale and retail infrastructure around the newly legal product. It would write the parcel numbers of 10 specific, investor-run growing locations, including one in North Toledo, into the state constitution and has sparked debate over whether that represents a monopoly.

According to the poll, voters said they would support allowing adults to possess small amounts of marijuana for their personal use by a margin of 53 percent to 47 percent. That’s outside the poll’s margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points. Quinnipiac questioned 1,180 Ohio voters.

Ninety percent like the idea of legalizing pot for medical use compared to 9 percent who don’t.

The poll results, however, raise the question of how much of a legal market for pot would be created in Ohio as just 16 percent of registered voters said they would definitely or probably use it while 84 percent said they probably or definitely would not.

ResponsibleOhio, the investor-financed group behind Issue 3, is already airing ads to convince voters to support the proposed constitutional amendment. The lesser-funded opposition is expected to do the same.

But the poll seems to suggest Ohioans have already made up their minds. On the personal-use side, just 3 percent say they didn’t have an opinion. Just 1 percent is undecided when it comes to medical marijuana.

“If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, then the Red Planet might be the more spacey place,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University Poll. “That’s because men are more likely than women to support legalization of marijuana for recreational use.

“Not surprisingly, support for the change is linked to age, with younger voters more likely to see personal use of pot as a good thing,” he said.

The poll showed Floridians support the legalization of personal pot by a margin of 51 to 45 percent, but Pennsylvanians are locked in a statistical tie on the issue — 47 percent to 49 percent.

All agree on medical pot with 90 percent of Pennsylvanians and 87 percent of Floridians on board.
Source: Toledo Blade, The (OH)