A majority of Mississippi voters—52%—approve broad cannabis legalization in the state, while 63% want lawmakers to approve a medical cannabis law that mirrors the one approved by voters last November but struck down by the state Supreme Court last month, according to a Millsaps College and Chism Strategies survey.
The survey found 37% oppose adult-use cannabis legalization in the state.
Republican Gov. Tate Reeves has said he wants lawmakers to approve such a bill and respect the will of the voters as the Supreme Court decision was based on the state’s initiative process, rather than the medical cannabis provisions.
Another 20% of those surveyed said that legalizing medical cannabis in the state was the most important issue for determining how they would vote in next year’s elections, during which Reeves and state lawmakers will be on the ballot. The survey found 48% of voters disapprove of Reeves’ job performance with 35% approval. Nearly half of voters (49%) disapproved of the state legislature, with 21% approving of their work.
Dr. Nathan R. Shrader, chair of the Department of Government and Politics and director of American Studies at Millsaps College, said that the poll shows that voters’ policy preferences “do not appear to be anywhere near the same ideological positions as the majority of the state’s elected officials.”
“Mississippi voters overwhelmingly support legalizing medicinal marijuana, which was actually done by the electorate last November. They also favor legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes and expanding Medicaid by healthy margins. … The coming months, including the 2022 legislative session, will be a test of how long the state’s elected leaders can hold positions that are greatly at odds with the majority of Mississippi’s voters.” — Shrader in a statement
Mississippi voters polled were split on how they view the direction of the state, with 38% believing it is heading in the wrong direction and 36% believing it is headed in the right direction, with 28% unsure.
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