Poll: 3/4 of Virginia voters support decriminalizing marijuana possession

Updated: Feb. 7, 2018 at 9:06 AM EST
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(WWBT) - A majority of Virginians support decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana.

That's according to a new poll from the Wason Center for Public Policy and Christopher Newport University.

The poll found 76 percent of respondents supported removing jail time as a punishment for possessions of small amounts of marijuana and replacing it with a fine. Just 21 percent were opposed.

There is a proposed bill in the General Assembly that would change that penalty.

Among other issues in the poll, Virginians support treatment over jail for opioid abusers, a full expansion of Medicaid, raising the minimum wage to $10.10 by 2020 and prohibiting sending emails while driving.

"While a majority of voters support a full expansion of Medicaid, Republican voters oppose it, and Republicans are still in charge in the General Assembly," said Dr. Quentin Kidd, director of the Wason Center. "However, a partial expansion has the support of Republican voters, which may open a path to compromise this session."

The poll also showed support for a nonpartisan commission to redraw political districts rather than allowing the Legislature to draw its own districts.

The poll consisted of interviews with 870 registered Virginia voters, and has a margin of error of +/-3.6 percent.


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