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Washington Marijuana Legalization Measure Polling Strong

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #750)

A solid majority of Washington voters approve of Initiative 502, the marijuana legalization measure sponsored by New Approach Washington, according to a SurveyUSA poll released this week. The poll had support for the initiative at 57%, with 34% opposed.

The initiative would legalize and regulate the cultivation, distribution, and possession of marijuana by adults 21 and over. Similar measures are on the ballot in Colorado and Oregon.

The level of support for the initiative is higher than a Public Policy Polling survey in June, which had support at 54% and opposition at 37%.

Campaign organizers can take some comfort in the numbers, which show an absolute majority in favor of the initiative. It's one thing to be leading in a poll, but unable to crack the 50% mark; it's another to go comfortably over 50%. If the campaign can keep its numbers from slipping in the final weeks, it appears poised for victory.

The poll's cross-tabs show almost identical levels of support among men (58%) and women (57%), while every age group except the 65-and-older (45%) also shows majority support. The initiative polled strongly with whites (60%), but not so much with Hispanics (47%) or Asians (42%). Whites make up 80% of the Washington electorate.

Democrats (70%) and independents (62%) strongly support the measure, while only one-third (33%) of Republicans do. Similarly, the measure wins majority support among liberals (76%) moderates (63%), and Tea Party members (!) (54%), but not among conservatives (33%).

SurveyUSA contacted 700 Washington residents last week and identified 524 of them as likely voters. The poll was conducted by telephone, using both cell phones and land lines.

Just a little more than a month and a half from election day, Initiative 502 is sitting pretty. It also has a lot of money in the bank and little sign of organized opposition. It could happen this year in Washington state.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Tony_42 (not verified)

It would not surprise me to see civil war over this human rights issue. The US "authorities" are using cannabis prohibition to target the poor and minorities while protecting existing markets for big pharma, big tobacco, and big alcohol.

I am watching from Canada with great interest. Good luck to these persecuted people in Amerika. The old Soviet Union has nothing on them in terms of police state persecution.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 10:21am Permalink
Stoops (not verified)

In reply to by Tony_42 (not verified)

Not for long.  The marijuana movement will continue and will never stop.  Prohibition depends upon 100% illegality everywhere so once a few states begin to legalize marijuana, the prohibition model will surely topple everywhere.  The drug war IS winnable and I am confident the People will prevail versus the various governments that have been waging war on us, the People.

It is very plausible that the illegality of marijuana is what contributes to its popularity.  Many products are made popular because of their perceived illegal nature:  Cuban cigars and moonshine to name a couple.  It is a shame however, that so many people have to become stigmatized from prosecution and penalty.

I'd be willing to bet that the government plays for keeps on this one.  It is going to hurt so many corporate interests if marijuana is legalized, namely the police, military, and prison industrial complex industries (which are just propped up by taxes anyway).

I do not think the alcohol industry will be affected much because everyone that uses weed is already using it, and everyone that prefers alcohol is already using it.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 2:31pm Permalink
Anonymous765 (not verified)

"It" could happen after election....ah, but what exactly is "it"?


Whatever "it" is, we're still going to be seeing SWAT raids on people's homes for growing, kids removed from people who grow, etc.  There are probably thousands of home growers in Washington state, all will remain completely illegal.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 2:04pm Permalink
David J. McDonough (not verified)

The public is not allowed to see or hear from Dr. Ron Paul, so we must put our asses out there! Organize protest and demonstrate. Please get in touch with and use us silver hair’s in your aria.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 3:47pm Permalink
David J. McDonough (not verified)

Please get in touch with and use us silver hair’s in your area.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 3:49pm Permalink
Jeff Brown (not verified)

We the people are definitely winning. The people have slowly seen thru all the lies. Marijuana is the the most beneficial plant on the planet and  the  prohibitionist are evil- some conscious and some unconscious. Keep educating your friends and  enemies. It just the conservatives and older Americans who continues to poll against. The Silver tour is educating the older generation. Should grandma smoke pot?

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 4:29pm Permalink
Paul Pot (not verified)


All seven ballot initiatives could win this November and it will null and void federal and international law and other nations sick of the blood bath or financial crisis they are in will just go ahead and legalize. 
The world is watching. 
Register to vote for marijuana ballot initiatives in Colorado, Oregon, Washington, Arkansas, Montana, Massachusetts, North Dakota and any reform friendly politician. 
Gary Johnson for president.
War is Over!
Fri, 09/14/2012 - 3:32pm Permalink
Uncle Bob (not verified)

This is a nice feel-good story, but I wouldn't get your hopes up.  Like another poster said, it will remain FEDERALLY illegal.  The odds of the initiates actually passing in any of these three states are slim to none, anyway.  If it didn't pass in California of all places, what chance do Washington, Oregon, or Colorado have?  Maybe one, maybe two generations down the line it would be realistic.  Today?  Not at all.


There's certainly more going on behind the scenes than we can know.  The prohibition doesn't make much logical sense, so at the root of it all must be money and greed.  For that reason, I don't see prohibition ending EVER in the US.  I doubt the initiatives will pass, but even if they do it will be fruitless law trumped by federal law.


Big Government will step in and impose sanctions against any state that tries to pass a law like this, and there will be tons of raids and stings and arrests, right under the State's nose.  It would be an utter disaster if the initiative passed and I truly believe that some politician behind the scenes would just rig the election to prevent the mess that would ensue.

Sorry guys, don't mean to be a downer, but unfortunately that's just the way it is.  Hope in one hand, shit in the other, and watch which fills up first.  All you have to do is look at history and what has come before *cough California *cough*.  We had our hopes up for Cali back with Prop 19 and look what came from that.  Nothing at all.

Sat, 09/15/2012 - 12:56am Permalink
notSpicoli (not verified)

In reply to by Uncle Bob (not verified)

It will take a full year to set up the privately owned grower and retail facilities in the state. However, one month after I-502 passes, no adult in the state over 21 years old can be arrested for possession of up to an ounce of marijuana, 16 ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form, or 72 ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid form, by any state entity.

New Approach Washington learned from the prop 19 campaign. They spend years preparing the initiative, raising funds, and enlisting wide ranging support-- not just to get on the initiative on the ballot, but to run a campaign to get it passed. And they are prepared and have the resources to defend I-502 against the feds. The operation is highly disciplined, incredibly well organized, and, once committed, we certainly cannot afford to lose.

So, Uncle Bob Buzzkill, despite you're dire predications and rationalizations for despair and surrender, we will fight on.

Sat, 09/15/2012 - 4:48pm Permalink
Uncle Bob (not verified)

In reply to by notSpicoli (not verified)

The Obama administration has shown that they will go in to any state and shut down state-law-abiding dispensaries without the willing consent of that state.  You say Washington is prepared to defend I-502 against the feds.  How?  What can they possibly to do to stop them, when the FBI and the DEA come storming in with their riot shields and assault rifles?  When state employees get threatened with arrest and federal prison, like has happened in other states over medical cannabis.  I want you to be right.  I want to believe that things can change and that reform and compassion are on the horizon.. but wake up man, it's NOT going to happen in our life time.  Not while the special interest in the private sector controls politics and while an entire generation of Americans was raised on the belief that Marijauan is harmful and bad.   Money and greed are the most powerful forces that drive our nation, while governors, presidents, and congressmen are in the back pocket of huge corporations that dictate what can be legal in this country.  I wish you were right, but I know you aren't.

Sat, 09/15/2012 - 8:47pm Permalink
Plant Down Babylon (not verified)

In reply to by Uncle Bob (not verified)

The WA Sheriff and the state police should grow some balls and tell the feds that they are NOT WELCOME in the state of Washington, which has sovereignty over it's citizens.

The feds try to claim commerce clause, but that is only when it crosses state borders. The state police should be defending, GUNS DRAWN, any state law!!!

The feds can suck it. State rights trump fed law. THAT IS A DEMOCRACY

Tue, 09/18/2012 - 8:23pm Permalink
Open-Eyes (not verified)

Cant you see the game being played here?

502 will pass, and a judge will strike it down, due to the Feds not allowing for legal marijuana.

Trust me -- Stevie Wonder could see this coming.

The remaining portion of the law will be the DUI section, and by means of your stupidity, the cops get what they always wanted, marijuana in the same category as alcohol.

Nothing has changed on the federal level with regard to marijuana, and no Washington Governor is going to risk the loss of federal revenue, based on your ridiculous voting patterns.

Yes, its too good to be true, but a majority of idiots will vote for the cops pulling you over, just like alcohol.

I urge you to engauge your brain, before you engauge your power of the vote on this one.

Yes, people that don't smoke actually compare weed to liquor, and think your driving skills diminish on weed, just like when you drink -- and we all know that's a lie.

None-the-less the cops cant wait to pull you over, and ruin your life for having smoked weed, several days ago.

One of the myths surrounding this action, is the claim that courts and jails will bear less of a burden, because it will be legal to smoke pot. I have news, the counties, and state will reap the rewards of your $5,000 bill for driving while having smoked weed.

The science behind the testing for marijuana is far from perfect, but you mark my words, oh young student of weed -- the law will be struck down -- but in the name of safe driving, the DUI portion will remain.

Its a sad game being played against your emotions...

They will keep the DUI portion, and use children, and driver safety as the basis of their pre determined actions. Its the same ole crap, different day, when it comes to what cops want.

Thu, 09/20/2012 - 3:18am Permalink
vader ranger (not verified)

A few years ago I was at a law enforcement gear tradeshow (part of my job) and mentioned to a supplier of "police equipment" I thought if they legalized pot there would be great savings in the number of LEO needed (and expensive equipment), jails, courts etc. I thought he was going to have a heart attack. It was obvious his only interest in the question was selling more and more police equipment no mater the logic of the law in question.

I'm sure there are no end of products we could outlaw and let cops run around arresting people just to keep their jobs and money flowing.

Mon, 09/24/2012 - 7:05pm Permalink

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