Are Colorado Residents Happy With Recreational Marijuana?

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Colorado residents seem to be satisfied with legal marijuana almost four years after the historic passage of Amendment 64.

In November of 2012, voters in Colorado approved Amendment 64 by a margin of 55 percent to 45 percent. The historic vote granted Colorado residents the right to cultivate, consume, purchase, and travel with marijuana for recreational purposes. Tourists can also legally purchase marijuana in Colorado.

With all of the politics surrounding legal marijuana, it can be difficult to assess whether or not the public is pleased with reform efforts. Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) and Public Policy Polling worked together to conduct a poll to gauge the mood of Colorado residents.


The poll indicated that 51 percent of Colorado residents would oppose a repeal of Amendment 64, while only 36 percent would support it. When asked about legal marijuana’s impact on the economy, 61 percent felt that marijuana had a positive impact, while only 19 percent felt legal marijuana hurt the economy.

“One of the best indicators of whether legalization has been successful is how the public feels about it, and clearly most Coloradans think it was the right decision and wouldn’t want to change it,” said Mason Tvert, spokesman for MPP.

Some politicians have tried to spread the idea of buyer’s remorse in Colorado. Massachusetts State Senator John Lewis took a recent trip to Colorado to analyze the state’s marijuana program. Voters in his state will decide whether or not to legalize recreational marijuana in November.

“As I saw myself when I was there, it is clear that many families and businesses in Colorado are having buyer’s remorse after legalizing commercial marijuana,” Lewis recently concluded, according to the Cannabist.

Now that there is more data on the Colorado program, Senator Lewis may have a more difficult time conveying his buyer’s remorse narrative.

“It’s easy for opponents of legalization to put words into the mouths of Colorado voters,” Mason Tvert said, “but these results actually let voters speak for themselves, and voters by and large would not want to go back to prohibition.”