Poll: Majority of Americans favor rec marijuana legalization

As five states prepare to vote on legalizing recreational marijuana in November, a new Pew Research Center poll shows the majority of Americans favor legalization.

According to Pew, 57% of Americans say marijuana should be legal, with 37% opposed. Ten years ago the numbers were flipped, with 60% saying it should be illegal and 32% in favor of legalization. The latest poll was conducted Aug. 23-Sept. 2 among 1,201 U.S. adults.

Half the states have legalized marijuana in one form or another, and three more will vote to legalize medical marijuana this fall. Montana will vote on legalizing MMJ dispensaries.

The Pew poll shows that younger Americans are mainly responsible for the shift in support of legalization, though an increasing number of older adults are in favor.

A poll last month in California showed a majority of voters favor an adult-use measure that’s on the Nov. 8 ballot. Recent polls in three other states where rec is on the ballot – Nevada, Maine and Massachusetts – also show a majority of voters in favor of legalization.