A majority of attendees surveyed at the 2022 Minnesota State Fair supported legalizing cannabis for adult use. The poll, conducted by the state House of Representatives, found that 61.4% of respondents backed the reforms, with 30.2% opposed, and 8.4% undecided or unsure.
The poll conducted at the state fair last year found that 58.3% supported cannabis legalization with 34.1% opposed.
The poll was conducted by the nonpartisan House Public Information Services Office and is considered an informal, unscientific survey of issues discussed in prior legislative sessions that may again be topics of discussion in 2023. This year’s poll was taken by 7,110 fairgoers, an increase from the 5,231 people who took the poll in 2021.
The poll results come a week after Scott Jensen, a former Republican Minnesota state senator and current GOP gubernatorial nominee, said he thinks Minnesota should consider decriminalizing “trivial amounts” of cannabis and should let voters decide via the ballot whether to adopt adult-use legalization reforms. In 2019, Jensen sponsored an unsuccessful bipartisan legalization bill.
His opponent, incumbent Gov. Tim Walz (D), in his supplemental budget proposal earlier this year called for the state to legalize cannabis and set aside $25 million to create a Cannabis Management Office to oversee the program.
Last year, the Minnesota House passed a cannabis legalization bill but the GOP-controlled Senate ultimately let the legislation die without consideration on the chamber floor. At that time, Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R) said lawmakers didn’t think it was a “good idea” to legalize cannabis “for fun.”
Minnesota lawmakers, though, did approve a bill to legalize small quantities of THC in hemp-derived food and beverage products. Walz signed that bill into law in June and the new rules took effect on July 4.
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