Gallup Poll: Reasons Why Americans Do (Or Don't) Support Marijuana Policy Reform

In October 2018, the Gallup public opinion survey organization released survey data revealing that 66 percent of Americans support legalization of adult social use of marijuana. New data from Gallup digs more deeply into the reasons why.

Gallup reported on June 12, 2019, that:

86% of U.S. supporters of legal marijuana saying its medicinal benefits are a very important reason they support legalization. Majorities also say freeing up police resources to focus on other crimes, respecting people's personal freedom, and generating tax revenue for state and local governments are key reasons for their support.

Gallup also polled opponents of legalization, and reports that:

The roughly one-third of Americans who oppose legalization were asked to say how important each of six factors is to their position on the issue. Foremost among these is the possibility of increased car accidents involving drivers who use marijuana -- 79% say this is a very important reason they oppose legalizing the drug.

Additionally, at least six in 10 opponents rate three other factors as very important reasons behind their objections: the possibility that marijuana users would try stronger and more addictive drugs; the potential for marijuana usage to increase; and that legalizing marijuana would not benefit society much. A slim majority of opponents cite its potential harm to users.

Opponents are least likely to say that a personal belief that drug use is immoral is a key factor for them, with 43% citing this as a very important reason they oppose making marijuana legal.

Survey data available here.