About 60% of Voters Favor Ohio Cannabis Legalization

About 60% of state voters favor an Ohio cannabis legalization proposal that the state is putting on the November ballot, according to a new survey. The survey also found that more than two-thirds of those surveyed believe legalization in the state is inevitable.

With early voting about to begin, 55% of respondents said they will “definitely” or “probably” vote in favor of the Ohio cannabis legalization initiative, called Issue 2. About 34% stated they will “definitely” or “probably” oppose it.

The survey, conducted in mid-August by FM3 Research on behalf of the Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA), interviewed 843 likely voters. Only 11% of respondents remain undecided.

“Our supporters come from all backgrounds: Democrats, Republicans, veterans, patients, mothers and fathers,” Tom Haren, spokesperson for the CRMLA, said. “They know that our plan to regulate and tax adult-use marijuana is good for Ohio and good for Ohioans. This poll shows that when it comes to marijuana, Ohio voters’ opinion is clear. I feel confident we’ll see that in the election results.”

The Ohio Cannabis Legalization Proposal Called Issue 2

Issue 2 would create a state-run system that regulates the sale of legal recreational cannabis in Onio. It also would legalize the ability of adults to grow cannabis at home, with a limit of six plants per person and 12 plants per home.

The law also would create a 10% cannabis sales tax. State officials have already earmarked revenue from the sales tax to go toward social equity and jobs programs. They also want to set aside a portion of the money for education and treatment around substance use disorders.

The state also wants to protect the identities of people in the adult-use market, maintain employers’ and landlords’ rights to prohibit cannabis use and protect financial institutions that work with licensed marijuana businesses.

According to the CRMLA, the proposal  “fixes a broken system while ensuring local control, keeping marijuana out of the hands of children, and benefiting everyone.”

When the New Law Could Go Into Effect

In the event of approval in the general election on Nov. 7, Issue 2 would take effect 30 days later, positioning Ohio as the 24th state in the U.S. to legalize adult-use cannabis. Being a statutory measure, Issue 2 necessitates lawmakers to draft legislation to implement the Ohio cannabis legalization law.

The recent survey also inquired about Ohio’s medical cannabis program, which was introduced in 2019. The poll results show that nearly two-thirds of Ohioans express approval for the medical cannabis system.

In 2015, Ohio voters rejected a proposal to amend the constitution and allow legalized cannabis sales controlled by a small group of producers. The new proposal is more in line with what other states have passed in recent years.

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