A statewide poll of likely voters shows continued strong support for Prop 207, which would legalize recreational marijuana in Arizona. A full 57% of voters support Prop 207 while 38% oppose it, almost identical to the measure’s support in early August (57-37%).
In contrast to some recent public polling, this survey presented voters with the full language that appears on the Arizona general election ballot. The measure earns 57% support overall, with 83% of those supporters saying they are certain to support it. The measure stands at 72% among self-identified Democrats, 70% among self-identified independent voters, and 42% among self-identified Republicans.
Proposition 207 would allow limited marijuana possession, use, and cultivation for adults 21 and up and fix outdated criminal penalties for marijuana possession – Arizona is the only state in the country where first-time, low-level marijuana possession is still a felony.
Smoking marijuana would still be banned in public places. Prop 207 also calls for harsh penalties for those who use marijuana and drive impaired. The measure has packaging and labeling provisions to keep marijuana edibles away from children.
Proposition 207 would impose a 16% tax on marijuana to fund public safety, roads and freeways, community colleges, mental health programs, and substance abuse programs. It would generate at least $300 million a year in new tax revenues. And 207 would create good paying jobs at a time when the state’s economy needs them.
Indeed, 65% of those surveyed believe Prop 207 would have a positive effect on Arizona’s economy while 26% said it would have a negative effect.
Prop 207 frees up police and prosecutors to go after more serious crimes; it would give those with minor, non-violent marijuana offenses on their criminal records the chance to expunge those records, opening doors to better jobs and housing.
The vast majority of sales would take place at locations that have already been carefully licensed as medical marijuana dispensaries. The medical marijuana program has operated safely and successfully for a decade and has long enjoyed public support.
In 2016, a marijuana legalization ballot item was narrowly defeated at the polls. The writers of Prop 207 listened to voters and made major changes with respect to public safety, protecting children, workplace and private property safeguards, and targeted tax revenue funding.
Smart and Safe Arizona campaign chairman Chad Campbell said Prop 207 “was written to provide sensible and realistic marijuana legalization laws for Arizona. As legalization becomes more inevitable, 207 represents a carefully researched plan to get legalization right.”
The survey was conducted September 24 to September 29, 2020 by Strategies 360 and carries a margin of error of 3.5%. The survey was conducted using a mix of live interviews on landlines and cell phones, as well as web interviews matched to the voter file. 45% of those surveyed identified as Republican and 41% identified as Democrat.
Photo: Ted Eyton/Flickr CC2.0. Image: Strategies 360