Arizona is on many lists as one of the states that is likely to legalize marijuana in 2016. I have personally put Arizona on all of my lists, in addition to California, Nevada, Michigan, Maine, and Massachusetts. It sounds like Vermont and Rhode Island have a good chance of legalizing between now and then via legislative action as well. However, a recent poll shows the Arizona effort losing be a very slim margin right now. Per Biz Journals:
A new Arizona State University Morrison-Cronkite Poll shows 49 percent of state voters support marijuana legalization while 51 percent oppose.
The statewide poll of more than 900 voters found younger voters and Democrats tend to support legalization while Republicans and older voters oppose it. Sixty-four percent of Democrats back cannabis legalization while only 29 percent of Republicans do, according to the poll.
“Predictably, those 30 and younger (69 percent) and those age 31 to 55 (57 percent) are more likely to favor legalization than those 56 and older (36 percent),” said David Daugherty, associate director at Morrison Institute which conducted the poll. “It is important to note, Republicans and older adults vote in larger numbers than either Democrats or young adults, which would, at least at this point in time, point toward likely defeat of the legalization of recreational marijuana.”
There is still quite a bit of time between now and Election Day, so there is still plenty of time to convince voters that marijuana legalization is a good public policy move. The Arizona initiative isn’t as good as some others out there, but it’s still much, much better than prohibition. Hopefully Arizona can join Colorado, Washington, Alaska, and Oregon (and D.C.!) in voting to legalize marijuana. I also hope that California, Nevada, Michigan, Maine, and Massachusetts can follow suit too via an initiative approval, and other states via legislative approval. Onward!