A recent poll by the University of Texas and the Texas Tribune hints at a significant rise in the state’s support for cannabis legalization.
The survey asked Texans whether or not they supported cannabis legalization, letting respondents choose between four options: “Never,” “For Medical Purposes Only,” “Small Amounts for Any Use,” or “Any Amount for Any Use.” Overall, 60 percent of Texans support legalizing the possession of either small amounts or any amount of cannabis, for any use.
Only 13 percent of respondents said cannabis should “never” be legal, while 28 percent believed cannabis possession should only be allowed for medical purposes.
The largest demographic in support of full legalization was the 30-44 age range at 69 percent. The least supportive age group was Texas’ older population but a significant number of aged Texans, 53 percent, still said they would support the right to possess “small amounts” or “any amount for any use.”
This is a big jump from a decade ago, according to the Tribune, as a May 2010 poll revealed that 54 percent of Texans opposed legalizing cannabis, with 27 percent preferring medical-only cannabis. The same poll found just 42 percent of Texans supported legalizing cannabis.
In an interview with Marijuana Moment, Heather Fazio — the director of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy — said, “Current marijuana laws are harsh, unreasonable, and unpopular. Thankfully, both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have put forward bills to change the way Texas handles marijuana.”
Texas has seen ups and downs in its cannabis policy. Cities like Fort Worth, Dallas, and Austin are not enforcing low-level cannabis crimes, but cannabis remains highly illegal in the Lone Star State. Additionally, while Texas has a limited medical cannabis system and an industrial hemp industry, local politicians have offered little support to the programs and in many cases have attempted to hamper progress.
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