Prop 19 at 52% in Latest Poll – California Legalizing Marijuana?

Proposition 19, California’s “tax and regulate” marijuana legalization initiative, is winning, according to the latest poll results. A Public Policy Institute of California poll released Thursday had support for Prop 19 at 52%, with 41% opposed and 7% undecided.

[Read the poll from the Public Policy Institute of California]

Prop 19 would legalize the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana and the cultivation of up to 25 square feet of marijuana by adults over 21. It would also allow counties or municipalities the local option of allowing a taxed and regulated marijuana commerce. It would not affect California’s medical marijuana law.

The survey question asked: “Proposition 19 is called the ‘Legalizes Marijuana Under California but Not Federal Law. Permits Local Governments to Regulate and Tax Commercial Production, Distribution, and Sale of Marijuana. Initiative Statute.’ If the election were held today, would you vote yes or no on Proposition 19?”

The survey was conducted by telephone (both land lines and cell phones) with 2,004 adult California residents in English or Spanish. It has a margin of error of +/-3%.

The poll is in line with most recent polls, which show the initiative leading by a few points. It is also noteworthy for showing support levels above 50%, something Prop 19 has had trouble doing in most other polls.

The poll suggests a strong correlation between political affiliation and support or opposition to the initiative. Strong majorities of Democrats (63%) and independents (65%) support the measure, while a strong majority of Republicans (62%) oppose it.

While that correlation has been fairly consistent among recent polls, this poll found a high level of support for Prop 19 among Hispanics (63%) than the other polls, most of which had Hispanic support at under 50%. The poll had support among whites at 50% and didn’t ask about blacks, who make up only 6% of the California electorate.

As in other recent polls, majorities in the San Francisco Bay Area and the Los Angeles area support Prop 19, while a majority in the Central Valley does not. Young adults (70%) support Prop 19, while those over 35 are split.

California may legalize marijuana on November 2. But the vote is going to be close, so if you’re a Californian please get to California’s polls, and tell everyone you know in California who might support this to do so too.

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