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Support for marijuana legalization hits all-time high

21 April 2017

About two-thirds, of 65 percent, of respondents further said they believe marijuana is less risky than most other drugs and 53 percent said they believe alcohol is more harmful to a person's health than pot.

Sixty-five percent think marijuana is less risky than most other drugs. Congress approved a major overhaul of drug laws, the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, which removed some mandatory minimum sentences for minor drug offenses but also classified marijuana, at least temporarily, as a Schedule I drug with no valid medical use, along with heroin, mescaline and LSD. And some new polls show just how strong that movement is becoming. Sixty-one percent of Americans now say the it should be, a five-point increase from a year ago. But then-Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of that bill, saying the state couldn't put its workers at risk of arrest from federal authorities by putting them in the middle of licensing and regulating something the federal government deems illegal.

Many states have legalized pot in some form, and most Americans don't think the federal government should try to stop its sale and use in those states. Just yesterday, West Virginia's governor signed a law passed by the legislature to create a medical marijuana system in the state. CBS News justice reporter Paula Reid joins CBSN...

However, if enough states recreationally legalize pot, it will send a signal to the federal government that they have become truly out of sync with society.

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Marijuana entrepreneurs are capitalizing on 4/20, the annual pothead holiday, as an opportunity to sell even more weed than usual. The overwhelming majority of Americans - 69% - think habitual drug use should be treated as an addiction and mental health problem instead of a criminal offense.

New Hampshire lawmakers have already rejected a pot legalization bill this year, and they are only now getting ready to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana - a step CT took in 2011.

Democrats and Republicans have held the White House as states defied pot prohibition.

"We need to do a better job of making it more hard, at least as hard as it is to access alcohol as it can be", he said.

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Eighty-eight percent of Americans, including those across the political spectrum, however, said they support allowing doctors to prescribe small amounts of marijuana to patients suffering from serious illnesses.

In 1971, a group of teens, who called themselves the Waldos after their proclivity for hanging out near a wall at San Rafael High School, would meet every day after school at 4:20 go searching for abandoned marijuana crops near the Point Reyes Coast Guard Station.

The Marist Poll also asked whether respondents support legalizing medical marijuana, and that number is higher: a whopping 83 percent in favor.

The new administration has expressed that they may be cracking down on recreational marijuana soon although their position is not necessarily supported by the public consensus.

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For possession of marijuana, adults over the age of 18 will be able to possess up to 30 grams per person and up to four plants per residence. 52 percent of those who use marijuana are millennials.