In the United States, recreational marijuana has gained legal status in six States. South Dakota, Arizona, Montana, and New Jersey have all approved ballot measures that legalize the drug. South Dakota also passed a medical marijuana measure. The state’s recreational cannabis law was struck down by the state Supreme Court last year but is back on the ballot this year. New Mexico, Virginia, Connecticut, and Alabama have also legalized adult-use marijuana. While Alabama and Vermont have not legalized pot yet, the State of South Dakota is looking to legalize it.
Support for legalization of marijuana at around 80 percent
Polls show that most Americans support legalization, and they’re mostly supportive among those under 30. However, they’re less supportive among those 65 and older. While the majority of Americans agree that marijuana should be legalized, fewer than four-in-ten of the voting public says the federal government should enforce current marijuana laws. But, there’s an uphill battle ahead for advocates of marijuana legalization in conservative Colorado.
Polls also show that Republicans are broadly supportive of legalization. Eighty percent of Republicans favor legalizing marijuana. Meanwhile, seventy-five percent of independents support legalizing marijuana only for medical reasons. And more than half of Republicans support safe haven legislation for marijuana-infused products. These results indicate that Republicans are out of touch with the general public on this issue.
Opponents of legalization of marijuana lean heavily on values-based arguments. Support for medical marijuana is based largely on compassion, but the middle ground acknowledges that marijuana policy in the federal government is a conflict between state and federal policies. The supermajority of Americans also believes that federal policymakers should play a role in the legalization debate and provide a safe haven for states that have legalized marijuana.
According to the poll, older adults favor legalization more than younger people. About two-thirds of respondents between the ages of 18 and 29 are in favor of legalization while only four percent of respondents in all the States that voted in marijuana were 65 and older. Despite the strong support for legalization, many conservatives and Republicans remain against the legislation. Nonetheless, the trend lines are clear and indicate that many Americans are open to legalizing marijuana.
The poll results also indicate that the support for legalizing marijuana is growing. More than two-thirds of Americans say it should be legal for medicinal and recreational use. Only one-in-ten Americans say it should remain illegal under any circumstances. The results are very promising. Support for legalization of marijuana in the United States is at an all-time high. There is no need for further polls to confirm this.
States that voted in marijuana are democratic States
Despite widespread opposition to marijuana legalization, the majority of States that voted in marijuana are democratic. For example, California and Washington state have legalized recreational marijuana, while Republican-led states have banned the drug. While the weed industry is overwhelmingly white in Colorado, the state has not taken any social equity measures. Nevertheless, Governor Jared Polis has signed a bill to create a social equity program to provide grants and loans to communities that are most negatively affected by marijuana prohibition.
In the 2016 presidential election, six out of nine marijuana-related ballot measures passed, with Colorado, Massachusetts, Illinois, Minnesota, and Montana legalizing recreational marijuana. Three states expanded the medical marijuana law and one remained a strict prohibition. Arizona failed to pass any marijuana-related measure. The five states that voted in marijuana were overwhelmingly Democratic. And the states that didn’t approve marijuana legalization, like Washington, were among the most conservative in the country.
Legalization efforts have failed to make a clear case for or against marijuana use. It is difficult to gauge the popularity of a given measure in a country that has such a complicated political landscape. Despite the challenges that many states have faced with marijuana legalization, advocates were fired up about their chances in the 2020 elections. Although Missouri and Idaho failed to pass marijuana legalization initiatives due to challenges related to getting signatures in person, they are still hopeful. Despite this setback, only one state remains reliably Democratic. Fortunately, other states are legalizing medical marijuana.
It’s not clear whether legalization of marijuana will ever become the norm. As a matter of fact, while marijuana legalization is a hot topic in the US, it remains controversial. Despite the high levels of public support for the substance, it’s unclear whether it will eventually become a constitutional amendment. The Supreme Court won’t force any state to legalize marijuana. But in the meantime, marijuana will remain illegal until it becomes legal in the federal government.
In the South, a few other States have gotten on board with legalizing marijuana for recreational use. In Virginia, lawmakers approved a bill in March that would legalize the drug in 2024. This measure was initially slated to take effect in 2024 but was delayed until 2021 by Governor Ralph Northam. Both bills also address social justice and give back to communities that have been affected by the war on drugs.
South Dakota legalized recreational use of marijuana
In November of 2020, voters in South Dakota approved two ballot measures legalizing marijuana use for recreational use. One, known as Measure 26, legalized medical cannabis, and the other, known as Amendment A, legalized recreational marijuana. But despite overwhelming voter support for these measures, Republican Gov. Kristi Noem and Republicans in the state government sought to block the amendment by filing legal challenges to it. They argued that Amendment A violated the state constitution’s “single-subject” rule. On appeal, the state Supreme Court affirmed the circuit court ruling that struck down Amendment A.
While the state may not be ready to implement legal pot for recreational use anytime soon, advocates are hoping to bring the issue back to the state’s voters in the 2020 election. A separate panel advanced legislation on Thursday that would establish a tax structure for the adult use cannabis market. Meanwhile, activists and supporters continue to explore ways to end the drug prohibition. The vote to legalize marijuana came during the 2020 election, and the governor’s office is currently trying to stymie the process.
The initiative is a result of a successful ballot campaign. It was backed by a majority of the state’s voters, who supported medical marijuana and the qualifying conditions for its use. A vote of 54% in favor of the initiative means that adults over 21 can now legally possess and distribute up to an ounce of cannabis. However, the state Supreme Court nullified the initiative in 2021. However, it is still on the ballot in 2022.
The process to legalize marijuana in South Dakota has proven challenging for the supporters and opponents. The organization South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws managed to gather enough signatures to qualify for the November ballot. Now, it’s up to the Secretary of State to certify the signatures. The initiative is likely to fail. It also has the potential to fail, because South Dakota has a conservative-leaning Supreme Court and a anti-pot governor.
Arizona law prohibits lawmakers from changing a voter-approved initiative without a three-quarters majority
The Republican-led legislature in Arizona cannot change the medical marijuana initiative without a three-quarters vote. This is because the law prohibits changes to a voter-approved initiative without a three-quarters majority. However, there is some wiggle room. Municipalities can make exceptions to the law, such as banning use in public buildings.
The language of the initiative is similar to that in other states, and was drafted by Doug Mains, a public health attorney who helped draft the petition. The language is similar to similar language in five other states, and no lawsuit has yet been filed under the provisions of the Arizona law. The coalition supports legalization in Arizona, but will not support legislation that would change the initiative unless there is a three-quarters majority of voters in each county.
The medical marijuana amendment was approved by voters in November, and is scheduled to take effect on July 1. The state health department will implement it, but the legislature will retain more control over the program. Meanwhile, opponents of legalized marijuana are challenging the bill in the courts. For example, Steve Zabawa, a car dealer in Billings, is suing the state for not allowing medical marijuana.
The legalization of recreational marijuana has been a hot topic for years. In fact, legal marijuana is illegal in many states. In the past, South Dakota, Mississippi, and Montana have approved measures legalizing marijuana. It has become legal in Arizona. This has caused concern among marijuana advocates, who worry that the Statehouse will stifle legalization in their state.
A new lawsuit filed by the sheriff of Pennington County, South Dakota, and the superintendent of the Highway Patrol in South Dakota has put the spotlight on marijuana reform. The suit has the backing of South Dakota’s Gov. Kristi Noem, who campaigned against marijuana legalization. The lawsuit also has the backing of two local sheriffs.