Quinnipiac Poll: Majority of Pennsylvania Voters Favor Legalizing Recreational Marijuana

marijuana_leafA recent Quinnipiac Poll found that Pennsylvania voters overwhelmingly favor medical marijuana for patients if their doctor prescribes it.

Eighty-eight percent of respondents support medical marijuana while just ten percent opposed the idea.

The numbers for medicinal pot were high across the political spectrum with 78 percent of Republicans, 94 percent of Democrats and 91 percent of Independents in favor.

As for legalizing marijuana straight up for personal and recreational use, a small majority would approve of such a measure.

Support for allowing adults “to legally possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use” is at 51 percent while 45 percent are against. There was a clear partisan divide on the issue.

Only 29 percent of Republicans support recreational marijuana while 66 percent of Democrats and 56 of Independents are in favor. Overall, men favored the action 56 to 39 percent while just 45 percent of women support legalization 50 percent oppose it.

“Bare majorities in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania say they support allowing adults to possess small amounts of marijuana for recreational use, and more than eight in 10 say it should be available for medical uses,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac Poll.

These results portray a major shift towards recreational marijuana. For instance, a July 2014 Franklin & Marshall poll found only 35% favoring legalization while 57% were against it.

Although support for recreational pot has risen above 50 percent, only 15 percent of surveyed voters say they are likely to try the drug, while 83 percent say they are not.

In terms of political affiliation, Democrats, Republicans and Independents all had majorities saying they would “definitely not use” recreational marijuana. Only 21 percent of Democrats say they are likely to try it while Republicans clocked in at only six percent.

This Quinnipiac survey was conducted from March 17th to March 28th. 1,036 Pennsylvania registered voters were interviewed live through land lines and cell phones. The margin of error is plus or minus 3%.

11 Responses

  1. PA Rep. Mathew Baker said during the hearings on April 8th that since legalization in Colorado: “Crime has gone up exponentially”, “Traffic fatalities have doubled”, and “Only 2-4% are now using medical cannabis now that it is legal”

    How can he as the chairman of the House Health Committee implement reasonable legislation with such inaccurate information?

    Colorado legalized recreational cannabis use in Dec 2012 (Jan 2014 for recreational sales). It has been legal medicinally for over a decade.

    Data from Colorado shows that there was not a statistically significant change in yearly traffic fatalities:

    2012: 474 (Population: 5.19 million, 0.0091%)
    2013: 481 (Population: 5.27 million, 0.0091%)
    2014: 479 (Population: 5.36 million, 0.0089%)
    [SOURCE: Colorado DOT & “As Reported” to NHTSA by FARS]

    The overall crime rate has not changed with any statistical significance in Colorado.

    Colorado Overall Average Crimes per 100,000:
    2012: 3,482.2
    2013: 3,486.8
    [SOURCE: Colorado Bureau of Investigation – 2013 Colorado Reported Statewide Crimes]

    Violent crime has decreased in Denver:

    Compared with 2013, in 2014 Denver violent crime is down overall by 0.8%, with murder down by 24.4%, rape down by 3.4% and robbery down by 3.1%. Property crime (including burglary, larceny, auto theft, theft from motor vehicle and arson) dropped by 2.2%. Overall UCR crime is down 2.0%.

    Medical use has not decreased:

    Monthly Colorado License, Fee, And Tax Income From Recreational And Medical Cannabis

    Total Total Rec Total Med
    Jan: 3,519,756 2,109,876 1,409,880
    Feb: 4,092,575 2,316,234 1,776,341
    Mar: 4,980,992 3,187,047 1,793,945
    Apr: 5,273,355 3,730,786 1,542,569
    May: 5,715,707 3,921,199 1,794,508
    Jun: 6,522,085 4,650,861 1,871,224
    Jul: 7,407,450 5,658,190 1,749,260
    Aug: 7,741,167 5,976,507 1,764,660
    Sep: 7,232,870 5,534,084 1,698,786
    Oct: 7,642,800 6,222,903 1,419,897
    Nov: 7,465,568 5,991,873 1,473,695
    Dec: 8,558,141 6,933,785 1,624,356

    Total: 76,152,466 56,233,345 19,919,121

    [SOURCE: Colorado Department of Revenue, “Colorado Marijuana Tax Data – State of Colorado Marijuana Taxes, Licenses, and Fees Transfers and Distribution”]

  2. I was very surprised to hear so much misinformation during Pennsylvania’s medical cannabis hearings on April 8th, from both the representatives and speakers. They are years behind on this topic yet they are making the laws?

    DA David Heckler, who stated he has never used cannabis testified that the intoxication from cannabis is “more pernicious than alcohol.” He also said “With all this malarkey that marijuana and alcohol are the same, any of us with any common sense know is not the case.”

    He is right, alcohol and cannabis are not the same, alcohol is significantly more harmful by just about every metric.

    The tone was overwhelmingly negative toward cannabis throughout the hearings. They truly are behind the times. As representatives of the people, there is only one thing the PA house needs to know: “88 percent of respondents approved of using marijuana for medical purposes” [SOURCE: 2015 Quinnipiac University poll of PA residents]

  3. Maybe I could have avoided all this nonsense by simply signing an executive order legalizing marijuana outright, but that would mean I actually gave two shits what you peons think. My successor, rand paul will take care of that, so I dont need to! Now, back to destroying america!!

  4. A lot of people can’t drink alcohol for various reasons, so a safer alternative such as Marijuana should be available. The whole gateway drug argument is bunk although there is a gateway to drugs and that is influences you expose yourself to; what you see and hear, everything that you feed your brain. Notice how people like to mimic their favorite celebrity. Every fashion trend of each generation is an example how celebrities influence the youth. You are what you feed your brain just like you are what you feed your stomach.

  5. “with the secretary of health specifically empowered to recommend dosage levels for various treatments to physicians,” Who knew Cohen was such a right wing states’ rights-er?

  6. The taxpayer does not get his money’s worth out of the millions we spend on put people in jail for this victimless crime. Conservative Republican here who is 100% in favor of decriminalizing marijuana, if not legalizing it outright.

  7. I am all for legalizing marijuana. If “Pot” is legalized, the State can tax it and alas, more revenue for Pennsylvania. If it is legalized, I don’t care who calls me “Piggy” I will be mellow! What, a Democrat with a sense of humor.

  8. I am all for legalizing marijuana. If “Pot” is legalized, the State can tax it and alas, more revenue for Pennsylvania. If it is legalized, I don’t care who calls me “Piggy” I will be mellow!

  9. As the first of the current legislators to have introduced medical marijuana legislation, I think it is way past time for the legislature to act on this issue. The medical marijuana legislation passed should be broadly applicable, with the secretary of health specifically empowered to recommend dosage levels for various treatments to physicians and to require highly visible labeling of any food product containing marijuana.

    There are very few policies that simultaneously command bipartisan and nonpartisan support, that benefit public health, that raise governmental revenues and decrease law enforcement costs. This is one such policy, and it ought to be enacted this year.

Comments are closed.

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