According to new poll numbers in Arizona, most residents of the state what marijuana to be legally allowed to buy, use, and grow under state law.
The poll, by HighGround Public Affairs Consultants, was conducted among 400 likely voters between May 18 and May 22.
The legalization measure proposed for 2020, Smart and Safe Act Arizona, is supported by 65 percent of voters, plus or minus the poll’s margin of error of 4.9 percent. This is far higher than 2016’s failed effort, Prop 205, had ever polled.
Smart and Safe would allow Arizonans 21 and older to legally possess up to an ounce of marijuana, five grams of which can be in the form of concentrates. Possessing between one and 2.5 ounces would be a petty offense only. The measure would also allow the growing of six marijuana plants, or a maximum of 12 if two people live in the home.
According to the poll, fifty-six percent of Republicans definitely or probably will be voting for it; 63 percent of voters aged 50 to 64 were in the category of definitely or probably, as were 55 percent of voters 65 and older.
This support from the 65 and older category was a “bit of surprise,” said Paul Bentz, HighGround’s vice president of research and strategy.
The 65-and-older group usually polls at 50 percent support or less for marijuana legalizations, Bentz said.
“The Highground poll is encouraging and tracks with what we know — Arizonans are ready to legalize marijuana,” said Stacy Pearson of Strategies 360, which is running the campaign on behalf of its sponsors, a group of the state’s legal medical marijuana dispensaries.
She added, “And in this economic environment, the need for new tax revenue is even more important to our state.”
The initiative needs 237,645 valid voter signatures to qualify for November’s ballot. According to Pearson the campaign is “on track to turn in more than 400,000 signatures next month.”