Saturday, the polling firm SurveyUSA released the results of a recent statewide poll that showed 55 percent of Washington voters supporting marijuana regulation in the form of Initiative 502 while only 32 percent opposed. The poll, conducted July 16-17, surveyed 630 registered voters and carries a margin of error of +/- 4%.
In Eastern Washington, traditionally more conservative than the western regions of the state, 54 percent of voters support the proposal while only 34 percent oppose. New Approach Washington, the committee supporting I-502, announced the endorsements of state Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown (D-Spokane), Spokane City Council president Ben Stuckart, and Rev. Percy Happy Watkins of Spokane’s New Hope Baptist Church on Tuesday. The measure also has the support of former U.S. Attorneys John McKay and Katrina C. Pflaumer, and 21 state lawmakers in addition to Brown.
Under I-502, adults 21 and over would be able to possess up to an ounce of marijuana. Private Washington businesses would be licensed to grow, process, and sell marijuana. A new per se DUI limit for marijuana’s psychoactive component, THC, would operate like the state’s per se limit for alcohol. Advertising and marijuana store locations would be restricted, and public display would be prohibited. The state would have one year to develop rules for security, quality control, and other matters relating to public health and safety before licenses would be issued.