The latest round of Battleground polls by George Washington University found respondents (nationally) would be 40% “much more likely” to visit the voting booth if marijuana’s legalization status was on the ballot. Thirty percent of respondents would be “somewhat” more likely as well. This brings the numbers up to a total of about 70% of voters who would be more likely to vote this fall if marijuana was in question.
Considering midterm elections have historically had low voter turnout, politicians are keeping a watchful eye on those states that have marijuana policy initiatives in the upcoming election. The results are promising for Democrats, because they tend to have a rougher time than Republicans in getting voters out in non-presidential election years.
The study goes on to show that 76 percent of liberals said they would be more likely to vote if marijuana was on the ballot, compared to a 64 percent for conservatives and 61 percent for moderates.
For instance, in Florida, Republican Governor Rick Scott’s reelection campaign says the “spillover effect” from high voter turnout because of the medical marijuana ballot question threatens to weigh the scales against him. In fact, the state’s Republicans feel so threatened that they have filed a legal challenge to keep the referendum off the ballot.
“It’s an issue that the Democrats can use to pump up the youth vote,” said Alex Patton, a Republican political consultant and pollster based in Gainesville, Florida. “The politics of it are dangerous for the GOP.”
The law overwhelmingly passed by Massachusetts voters in November officially went into effect on January 1, joining 17 other states and the District of Columbia in allowing the seriously ill to use marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation. Nearly a third of the U.S. population can now access medical marijuana if they have a qualifying condition!
While the people of Massachusetts are generally quite pleased about this, local governments are trying to delay implementation of the new law until the Department of Public Health can establish regulations to govern the program.
Apparently, local leaders would rather continue to arrest the seriously ill than wait four months for guidance from the state.
We are now 18 days away from the elections, and three states are poised to lead the way in ending marijuana prohibition! Passage of any of these initiatives will set the tone for marijuana reform nationwide, so it’s important to everyone who cares about this issue, no matter what state you live in.
As more and more people learn about the failure of marijuana prohibition and are presented with the facts, support for changing our laws grows. We can’t change the conversation, however, until we start it. Now, you have the opportunity to start a conversation about marijuana reform with the people in a position to make that reform reality: registered voters.
The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol has set up a system that makes it easy for anyone to call registered voters in Colorado and ask them to vote “YES” on Amendment 64.
Just click here and you can help change history:
You can make the difference in this election. It’s your call.