(Annapolis, MD) –Â According to aÂ new state Emerson College poll
, 55% of Maryland voters do not support legalizing marijuana when presented with other, non-legalization policy options.
This poll is significant to state lawmakers as the marijuana industry has renewed its annual push to expand into the Old Line State, which allows for possession of the drug, but has no “legal” marketplace.
ThisÂ new poll, conducted by Emerson College, found that the majority of voters support other non-legalization marijuana policies (prohibition, decriminalization, or medical legalization) while only 45% believe the state should move to legalize and commercialize marijuana for production, recreational use, and sales, like in stores. Support is notably low among Hispanics and Latinos in Maryland, with only 17% supporting recreational legalization and 35% supporting keeping marijuana illegal.
Support for commercialization is also low within groups that are traditionally considered to be pro-legalization. 50% of people aged 18-34 and 53% of Democrats oppose legalization.
“Maryland lawmakers have routinely batted down Big Pot’s attempts to expand its addiction-for-profit model and this poll finds Maryland voters overwhelmingly support their continued resistance to implement a taxed commercial market,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet, president ofÂ Smart Approaches to Marijuana Action (SAM Action)
Â and a former senior drug policy advisor to the Obama Administration. “A commercial market only serves the interest of Big Pot and its Big Tobacco, Alcohol, and Pharma investors. What’s more, tax revenues from marijuana sales have been routinely disappointing and outweighed by the societal costs resulting from increased availability and use of the drug.”