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Two-thirds Of Louisianans Surveyed Say They Support Legalizing Marijuana

Sixty-seven percent of Louisiana residents surveyed by JMC Analytics favor legalizing marijuana for both medicinal and recreational uses — a sharp jump from the firm's 2020 survey, which found 54 percent favored legalization.

Like many states in the South, Louisiana has restrictive laws regarding recreational marijuana use. While several cities, including New Orleans and Baton Rouge, have passed ordinances decriminalizing marijuana possession, state law treats marijuana possession as a criminal offense that’s punishable by fines and possible jail time.

Under Gov. John Bel Edwards, Louisiana has taken steps to expand its medical marijuana program. There are nine pharmacies licensed by the state to dispense THC products, but marijuana plants are prohibited under the law. Patients can only access products derived from the oil of the marijuana plant, such as tinctures.

In the recent survey on marijuana, 75 percent of those responding said they believed marijuana plants should be available to medical marijuana patients.

The poll's summary notes that the survey found broad support for "marijuana usage across the demographic and political spectrum." The only demographic correlation found in the survey: respondents over the age of 65 years old were less likely to be supportive of marijuana.

Other key poll results:

  • 65 percent said they would be more likely to support a candidate who wanted to "reform Louisiana's marijuana laws."
  • 49 percent said they would not prefer decriminalization to full legalization.

The poll was conducted on behalf of the Louisiana Association for Therapeutic Alternatives from March 22 to 23 and 1,160 people responded. It was conducted by both cell phone and landline. Its margin of error was 2.9 percent.

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