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Support For New York Marijuana Decriminalization Far Higher Than For Mayor


new york medical marijuanaDuring the 2014 Election, we found out that support for marijuana reform was higher than support was for most popular candidates. New York City did not have an initiative on the ballot (New York does not have an initiative process), but New York City did decriminalize marijuana. A new Quinnipiac Poll has found that marijuana decriminalization in New York City is far more popular than Mayor Bill de Blasio. Per Quinnipiac:

New York City voters approve 71 – 26 percent of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s decision to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, but give the mayor an overall 49 – 36 percent job approval rating, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Today’s rating compares to a 50 – 32 percent job approval in an August 26 survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University. The racial divide over Mayor de Blasio grows wider, with black approval at 71 – 14 percent and Hispanic approval at 56 – 27 percent, as white voters disapprove 50 – 34 percent.

Support for decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana is 51 – 45 percent among Republicans and over 66 percent among every other party, gender or racial group. Even voters over 65 years old support it 66 – 31 percent. Support in the boroughs ranges from 65 – 31 percent in Queens to 84 – 14 percent in Manhattan.

New York City voters say 70 – 27 percent that decriminalizing simple marijuana possession will not lead to an increase in crime, an opinion shared by every group listed.

I’d love to see a similar poll, but for full marijuana legalization. If just about any politician in New York City or New York State went head to head with marijuana reform, I bet reform would win just about every time. I’m hopeful for New York to legalize marijuana in 2016, but it will be an uphill battle since New York does not have an initiative system, as previously mentioned.


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Johnny Green


  1. Marijuana has been decriminalized in the city of St Louis but this hasn’t stopped the arrest.A person has to have a clean record for ten years before they don’t get arrested if caught with it if you live after being stopped.

  2. Poll of New Yorkers, from May, regarding marijuana legalization:


    > New York State voters support medical marijuana 83 – 15 percent and, by a smaller margin of 51 – 44 percent, they also support allowing adults to legally possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use

    > Support for recreational marijuana is 62 – 32 percent among Democrats and 53 – 42 percent among independent voters, with Republicans opposed 69 – 28 percent.

    We have ballot measures, which, I think… have to be put on the ballot by the legislature.

    We have reason to hope for legalization next year:


    > State Sen. Liz Krueger (D) will reintroduce the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act during the next legislative session, which begins in January…

    A similar bill didn’t make it out of committee in 2013, And even if it overcomes all obstacles and gets to the Governor’s desk, he would probably veto it, since he thinks running like a Republican will make him win the Democratic Presidential primaries. Or something.

    > One such official might be Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), who has not made it clear whether he would support a bill that legalizes marijuana for recreational use. In January, Cuomo said that Colorado-style legalization in New York is “a nonstarter for me.”

    Another one of those centrist, spineless, GOP-light Democrats I’m so happy to see losing elections all over the country…. Time for my party to distinguish itself from a GOP that is running so hard to the right they’re about to fall over.

    So, we’re probably not going to see NY legalize until we get Governor who isn’t going out of his way to keep conservatives in charge of the State Senate, and out of his way to veto a legalization bill because he thinks signing it would ruin his chances at being President.

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