Majority of Nevada Voters Still Oppose Marijuana Legalization

A majority, 52 percent, of likely midterm voters in Nevada oppose marijuana legalization while only 42 percent support it, according to a new Mason-Dixon poll for the “Las Vegas Review-Journal”.

Mason-Dixon (7/26-28)
Would you support or oppose legalizing and taxing marijuana in Nevada?
Support 42
Oppose 52
Undecided 6

This implies that in Nevada, there has been effectively zero increase in support for legalizing marijuana since 2006, when Question 7, a ballot measure to legalize and tax marijuana, failed by a 56-44 margin. It is hard to believe, given that pollsters like Gallup and Rasmussen have shown significant increase in support nationally for legalizing cannabis. There is no legalization initiative is on Nevada’s November ballot.

Probably more important than comparing this recent poll with the official results for Question 7 is to compare it against the last Mason-Dixon poll on marijuana legalization, taken right before the 2006 election. That poll found 35 percent for Question 7, 53 percent against and 12 percent undecided. So, comparing only polls by the same pollster, we are seeing a 7 point increase in support for marijuana legalization since 2006. That’s a decent improvement in only four years, and in line with what we have seen nationwide.

In 2012, the next time marijuana legalization will likely be on the ballot in Nevada, the voter demographics should be different because it is a presidential year. Also, if Proposition 19 passes in neighboring California and is successfully implemented for two years–or if it fails to pass–that could significantly move opinion in Nevada. I would be surprised if support levels don’t clearly change by 2012.

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at