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Poll: 70% of Florida voters support recreational marijuana and school choice

Only 29% reject the proposal, the study adds.

¿Se legalizará la marihuana recreativa en la Florida?
¿Se legalizará la marihuana recreativa en la Florida? | EFE/EPA/RUNGROJ YONGRIT

March 10, 2023 6:52am

Updated: March 10, 2023 11:30am

A survey conducted by the University of North Florida's (UNF) Public Opinion Research Laboratory (PORL) reveals that about 70% of Florida voters are in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana, and only 29% opposing the proposal.

“Efforts to put recreational marijuana in front of voters in 2024 are in the beginning stages, but support for it is high across the political spectrum,” said Dr. Michael Binder, a UNF PORL faculty director and professor of political science.

“If it makes it onto the ballot next year, and that’s a big ‘if,’ it has a good chance of reaching the 60% supermajority needed to pass.” 

According to the Florida Politics report, these numbers of support for recreational marijuana are even higher than a previous poll conducted by UNF in late 2019, when it garnered 64% support.

That is, the trend seems to indicate that more and more Floridians agree with the legalization of this consumption and it could be voted on in 2024.

In August 2022, the group Smart & Safe Florida started a campaign to legalize the recreational use of marijuana for adults 21 years of age and older, in a state where so far only the use of medical cannabis is allowed.

The initiative was submitted to the Florida Division of Elections to be voted on in 2024 as an amendment to the Constitution, for which they need to collect at least 900,000 signatures.

Smart & Safe Florida said then that "there is no evidence that legalizing marijuana for medical or recreational use at the state level, as 37 states have already done, has driven underage consumption in the regulated market."

Currently, 19 states and the District of Columbia allow the recreational use of marijuana, while 37 states allow the its use for medical purposes.

The survey also included questions about proposed reforms to Florida’s education system, including K-12 and higher education.

Floridians were asked if they support or oppose House Bill 1 (HB1), which would make all K through 12 students in Florida eligible to receive an apportioned share of public funds to attend private school and/or other school expenses, regardless of financial need.

Despite a cost of up to $2.5 billion 53% respondents said they support the bill, either somewhat or strongly, and 39% expressed opposition.

A mere 8% said they do not know or refused.

However, when asked if they"support or oppose the proposed constitutional amendment that would require school board candidates to disclose party affiliation in their elections, a majority (65%) of respondents said they oppose either strongly or somewhat, while just 26% said they support the measure, and 9% do not know or refused to answer," according to PORL.