The latest YouGov poll for The Economist has found a solid majority, 58 percent of Americans, agree that marijuana should be regulated and taxed just like like alcohol and tobacco. Almost as important, the poll found that only 23 percent disagreed with the idea of treating cannabis like alcohol. From the YouGov Poll:
Some people say marijuana should be treated like alcohol and tobacco. They say it should be regulated and taxed and made illegal for minors. Do you agree?
34% Strongly agree
19 Neither agree, nor disagree
16 Strongly disagree
Not surprisingly, the poll found support was strongest among young people and lowest among senior citizens.
The wording used is very important. Americans are significantly more inclined to say they support “regulating and taxing marijuana like alcohol” than they are to say they support simply “legalizing marijuana.” This is a critical messaging issue marijuana reform activists should always keep in mind. This poll is also of the general population, which tends to be more supportive of marijuana reform than likely voters.
Even taking into account those factors, this is still an impressive level of support and one of the largest ever found in a national poll. Clearly, the general trend of Americans becoming more accepting of marijuana legalization is continuing and even possibly accelerating.