A recent article by Phil Smith of StoptheDrugWar.org reports, “Marijuana Legalization Trails in New California Poll”. According to Smith, “The Public Policy Institute of California poll had 51% opposing pot legalization, with 46% in favor.”
However, we should point out that there is a world of difference between “legalization” and “regulation”.
Regulation enjoys much higher polling and the recent poll by The Economist shows this, as well as the first petition to qualify for White House Review, and other initiatives at the state and federal level that specifically call for marijuana to be strictly regulated, just like alcohol, or wine.
Unlike other initiatives, we did our polling first and found that there is strong support, especially with conservatives and police to regulate marijuana like alcohol. So, bottom line, 46% support for legalization is probably realistic, just as 62% support for regulating cannabis like alcohol is also realistic.
This poll was conducted via the web, but statistical analysis was performed to qualify respondents, who were selected from YouGov’s PollingPoint panel using sample matching. A random sample (stratified by age, gender, race, education, and region) was selected from the 2005–2007 American Community Study. Voter registration, turnout, religion, news interest, minor party identification, and non-placement on an ideology scale, were imputed from the 2008 Current Population Survey Registration and Voting Supplement and the Pew Religion in American Life Survey. Matching respondents were selected from the PollingPoint panel, an opt-in Internet panel. Weighting The sample was weighted using propensity scores based on age, gender, race, education, news interest, voter registration, and non-placement on an ideology scale. The weights range from 0.3 to 6.8, with a mean of one and a standard deviation of 0.93.
Our polling company considers the data valid and so do we.
Furthermore, we expect even better results on election day, because the real question that will be in front of voters is this:
“Would you support an initiative to regulate marijuana like wine, if you knew that a former superior court judge and LAPD deputy police chief helped to write it and a conservative Republican congressman, assemblyman and college president have endorsed it?”
My guess is that if you polled this question, you would blow right off the charts.
In any case, everyone should take another look at our initiative and the unique marketing plan we have developed to win the hearts and minds of voters. Carefully consider the track record and experience of our team as well as the shock waves that the Rohrabacher endorsement has caused. Not only are we getting frantic queries from other activists and journalists who seek confirmation that this really happened, but even Politico commented nationally on the conservative Republican’s endorsement.
Bottom line, this initiative offers a unique package that appeals to conservatives, while still securing historic wins for our side. The text is just a part of a winning formula that includes recruiting former drug warriors and conservatives who see the wine model as the best scenario for real and meaningful reform. And please don’t ever forget, RMLW is the ONLY voter initiative that repeals ALL the marijuana laws on the books.
Polling Details on 62% Support for Regulating Marijuana like Wine
“Public opinion continues to evolve on the issue of drug policy, particularly in regards to marijuana. In fact, a recent Economist/YouGov nationwide poll found that 58 percent agreed with the following statement, “Some people say marijuana should be treated like alcohol and tobacco. They say it should be regulated and taxed and made illegal for minors.” In addition, 62 percent of western region respondents agreed with this statement-the highest of any region in the nation.”
– John Fairbank
Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates
Here’s the link to the polling study by The Economist Magazine:
Here is the poll under question 30:
30. 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?
Strongly agree . . 34%
Agree . . 24%
Neither agree, nor disagree . . 19%
Disagree . . 7%
Strongly disagree . . 16%
As you can see, Strongly Agree + Agree = 34% + 24% or 58% support. However, this was a nationwide poll of 1,000 respondents. When data just for the West was teased out of the results by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates, the polling climbs to 62%.
Read David Malmo-Levine’s “Battle of the Marijuana Bills: Why ‘Regulate’ is Better Than ‘Repeal'” on Cannabis Culture.
Find out more at RegulateMarijuanaLikeWine.com.