New Yorkers support legalizing marijuana to balance budget

November 28, 2017

Fully 62% percent of New York State’s registered voters—across party lines—back ending cannabis prohibition, according to the findings of a survey released on November 27.

On the overall question of legalization, 71% of Independents were on-board, as opposed to 63% of Democrats and 53% of Republicans.

The poll, which was commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project Foundation and the Drug Policy Alliance and conducted by Emerson College, found that legalizing marijuana was the only policy voters supported as a fiscal measure to help solve the state’s $4 billion budget deficit.

Fewer than one in five respondents (20%) said they backed increasing income taxes, raising sales taxes, cutting education or public service funds, or spiking highway and bridge tolls to lower the deficit, the poll, which was covered by the website, Marijuana Moment, found..

 “The strong support for legal marijuana use challenges New York elected officials who continue to support ineffective, racially biased, and unjust enforcement of marijuana laws. This poll signals that New Yorkers favor using revenue from a legal marijuana market to address our budget deficit and lawmakers would be wise to heed their opinion,” Kassandra Frederique, New York State director for the Drug Policy Alliance, stated, adding,  “How New York decides to reform marijuana laws provides an opportunity to repair the significant harms prohibition causes in vulnerable communities across the state by centering racial and economic justice.”

A national Gallup poll released last month also found that 64% of Americans support legalizing marijuana, including majorities across party lines.

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