Ohio becomes the latest state where a majority support marijuana legalization

Ohio has become the latest state where a majority support marijuana legalization. According to Quinnipiac, 51 percent of registered voters support allowing adults to possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use. The poll found 44 percent still oppose this change.

A clear majority of Democrats and Independents support legalization, but by a margin of two-to-one Republicans remain opposed. As with all marijuana polling there is a huge generational divide. Legalization is backed by 72 percent of voters under the age of 30, but only supported by 31 percent of senior citizens. It has majority support among the middle age groups.

This shift in Ohio is important because the state is both a critical swing state in president elections and it allows citizen ballot initiatives. If a legalization initiative was put on the ballot in 2016 or 2020 it could really force the hand of the presidential candidates. Opposing a popular initiative which is on the same ballot is not a position politicians want to be in.

The poll also found 87 percent of Ohio voters back medical marijuana. It has over 75 percent support among every generation and partisan group.

Jon Walker is the author of After Legalization: Understanding the future of marijuana policy

Photo by Coleen Whitfield released under Creative Commons License