MA poll: Opponents, proponents of legalization in virtual tie

Massachusetts voters are split down the center over whether to legalize marijuana, although the anti-legalization campaign appears to have gained ground, a new poll shows.

The Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll of 500 Bay State voters found that 45.8% opposed legalizing recreational marijuana, 43% supported it, and 11% were undecided.

The difference was within the poll’s 4.4% margin of error, indicating that supporters and opponents of a possible marijuana ballot measure in November are in a virtual tie.

The main advocates of legalization in Massachusetts – the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol – must gather 10,792 valid signatures by early July to put the issue before voters in November.

The new poll, conducted May 2-5, also found that 50% of respondents opposed allowing people to grow their own marijuana, while 40% supported home growing.

Opponents of legalization have gained ground since a 2014 Globe poll, which found 48% of Massachusetts voters supported legalization while 47% were opposed.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, and several other prominent state politicians have been outspoken critics of legalization, writing editorials in newspapers and forming an anti-legalization committee that has begun raising money to fight adult-use marijuana.

The legalization campaign, meanwhile, has been running low on cash, with some supporters worried they may not have the resources to counter the opposition.