Metro-East News

Many Illinois voters want legal marijuana, poll shows

According to a poll taken by the Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, 74 percent of Illinois voters either support or strongly support decriminalizing marijuana.

That was in contrast to 21 percent who opposed or strongly opposed decriminalization. Five percent of respondents answered otherwise.

But support is also growing for the legalization of marijuana. Sixty-six percent of voters approve making recrational pot legal as long as it is taxed and regulated like alcohol. Forty-five percent of voters strong support the legalization.

The numbers changed significantly from March 2016, when 51 percent of voters were opposed to the recreational use of marijuana.

“Illinois voters are growing increasingly comfortable with the idea of decriminalizing marijuana and we now have evidence that most see it as a potential revenue source for the state,” said Jak Tichenor, the institute’s interim director.