A Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa Poll found 53 percent of Iowans support recreational cannabis legalization in the state – the first time a poll has found majority support among Iowa residents.
Pollsters Selzer & Co. started asking about cannabis legalization in February 2013 and, at that time, found just 29 percent supported legalizing recreational cannabis in Iowa. Last year, the poll found support and opposition for the reforms even at about 48 percent. In 2017 and 2018, about 40 percent were in favor with about 58 percent opposed in both years. In 2016, legalization had 34 percent support, with 63 percent opposed; 2014 say the widest gap with 28 percent for and 69 percent against.
A supermajority – 75 percent – of individuals 35 and younger supported legalization ion the state, the poll found, along with 56 percent of Iowans aged 35 to 54. Support dropped to 34 percent among those 55-and-older. The reforms were supported by a majority of Democrats (67 percent), independents (58 percent), the non-religious (79 percent), people who make less than $70,000 a year (59 percent), Catholics (53 percent), and people who live in cities (60 percent), suburbs (58 percent) and towns (53 percent).
Just 44 percent of rural Iowans supported the reforms, along with 42 percent of Protestants, 30 percent of evangelicals, and 37 percent of Republicans.
Another 81 percent of respondents supported expanding the conditions that qualify for the state’s medical cannabis program. Last week, House lawmakers approved a bill that would expand the list to include chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder, and “severe, intractable autism with self-injurious or aggressive behaviors,” the report says. That bill, which also allows patients to purchase 4.5 grams of THC-rich cannabis in a 90-day period, still requires Senate approval.
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