Read us | Listen to us | Watch us | Join Live Events | Turn Off Ads | Live |

Click on your language to translate this article:

Afrikaans Afrikaans Albanian Albanian Amharic Amharic Arabic Arabic Armenian Armenian Azerbaijani Azerbaijani Basque Basque Belarusian Belarusian Bengali Bengali Bosnian Bosnian Bulgarian Bulgarian Catalan Catalan Cebuano Cebuano Chichewa Chichewa Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Traditional) Chinese (Traditional) Corsican Corsican Croatian Croatian Czech Czech Danish Danish Dutch Dutch English English Esperanto Esperanto Estonian Estonian Filipino Filipino Finnish Finnish French French Frisian Frisian Galician Galician Georgian Georgian German German Greek Greek Gujarati Gujarati Haitian Creole Haitian Creole Hausa Hausa Hawaiian Hawaiian Hebrew Hebrew Hindi Hindi Hmong Hmong Hungarian Hungarian Icelandic Icelandic Igbo Igbo Indonesian Indonesian Irish Irish Italian Italian Japanese Japanese Javanese Javanese Kannada Kannada Kazakh Kazakh Khmer Khmer Korean Korean Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kyrgyz Kyrgyz Lao Lao Latin Latin Latvian Latvian Lithuanian Lithuanian Luxembourgish Luxembourgish Macedonian Macedonian Malagasy Malagasy Malay Malay Malayalam Malayalam Maltese Maltese Maori Maori Marathi Marathi Mongolian Mongolian Myanmar (Burmese) Myanmar (Burmese) Nepali Nepali Norwegian Norwegian Pashto Pashto Persian Persian Polish Polish Portuguese Portuguese Punjabi Punjabi Romanian Romanian Russian Russian Samoan Samoan Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic Serbian Serbian Sesotho Sesotho Shona Shona Sindhi Sindhi Sinhala Sinhala Slovak Slovak Slovenian Slovenian Somali Somali Spanish Spanish Sudanese Sudanese Swahili Swahili Swedish Swedish Tajik Tajik Tamil Tamil Telugu Telugu Thai Thai Turkish Turkish Ukrainian Ukrainian Urdu Urdu Uzbek Uzbek Vietnamese Vietnamese Welsh Welsh Xhosa Xhosa Yiddish Yiddish Yoruba Yoruba Zulu Zulu

Poll: More states joining marijuana legalization movement

As of last month’s elections, four more states voted to decriminalize marijuana for both medical and recreational use, bringing the grand total to 8 states that have legalized recreational marijuana (

As of last month’s elections, four more states voted to decriminalize marijuana for both medical and recreational use, bringing the grand total to 8 states that have legalized recreational marijuana (9, including Washington D.C.).

The Harris Poll revisited the topic of legalized marijuana this month and found that, even with more states joining the legalization movement, American sentiments have largely remained the same since last observed in February 2015.


The recent poll revealed that about 8 in 10 adults support the legalization of marijuana for medical treatment (82% 2016; 81% 2015), while half of Americans support legalizing marijuana for recreational use (50%; 49% respectively). Just over 2 in 5 adults (42%) oppose the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, particularly those ages 65 and older (56% oppose).

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll of 2,054 U.S. adults aged 18+ surveyed online between December 8 and 12, 2016.

Decisions, decisions

Whether or not you believe marijuana should be legalized for any reason, there is a larger question also at hand: who should decide whether or not to legalize the substance, the federal government on behalf of all states or state governments each for themselves? Just over a third of adults feel the decision should be made at the federal level (35% in 2016 and 2015), but the number who favor the states retaining the right to make this decision has increased from 44% in 2015 to 48% now.

Ch-ch-ch-changes

If marijuana were to be legalized, it has the potential to have implications far beyond a simple change of legality. About seven in ten adults believe that legalized marijuana will lead to increases in tax revenue (71%), the amount of marijuana used (71%), and the number of marijuana users (69%). Meanwhile, about six in ten expect increases in tourism to states where recreational marijuana usage is legal (64%) and greater consistency/standardization of the marijuana used (57%).

Alcohol consumption implications

When it comes to the potential impact of marijuana legalization on alcohol consumption, most regular drinkers (adults ages 21+ who drink alcohol at least several times a year), say that marijuana legalization would not impact their personal consumption of alcoholic beverages. 81% of regular beer and spirit drinkers and 85% of regular wine drinkers say that legalization of marijuana would not impact, or has not impacted (for those states where it has already been legalized), their consumption of alcohol. Of the balance, more say they will decrease their alcohol consumption than say they will increase their consumption.

However, according to Danny Brager, SVP of Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Practice, “It is very noteworthy that some pockets of consumers โ€“ across various age groups, income groups, and gender โ€“ responded in much more significant numbers that their consumption of alcohol may be impacted by marijuana legalization. To the extent that some of these consumer demographics are very important to each adult beverage category, marijuana legalization may have some adverse impacts on alcohol consumption.”