In key swing states, weed is polling better than all potential 2016 candidates

In key
swing states, weed is polling better than all potential 2016 candidates

So I briefly considered putting this thread in the 2016 election forum, but then decided against it since the comparison made in the article is kind
of an apples to oranges comparison. Though, like the article, I think it is an important point to make in regards to this coming election and the
article and I will elaborate on that below. But first up, let’s get to the meat and potatoes of the article:

In three key swing states, marijuana legalization is more popular than any potential 2016 presidential contender. That’s according to a Quinnipiac
University poll conducted in March.

More than 80 percent of adults in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida support medical marijuana, according to the survey. Fifty one percent of
Pennsylvanians, 52 percent of Ohioans and 55 percent of Floridians also support legalizing small amounts of marijuana for personal use.

Here is the graphic that came along with the article:

What’s funny is that even in Florida, home of Rubio and Bush, marijuana is still poling better than the candidates.

Home-state favorites Bush and Rubio poll better in Florida, but they’re still running 8 to 13 points behind recreational marijuana.

Now the article does point out that this isn’t a valid comparison to make since you are comparing an issue with people, but it is still worth looking
at and here’s why. These states are all swing states. They are the states that Presidential candidates pander to the most since they are the ones that
can determine their election chances. Marijuana is important to all of these states. Therefore marijuana should be an issue that all of the candidates
discuss if they want a chance of being voted for in those states. Gone are the days where candidates could pretend like this was just some fringe
issue that can be laughed away. It’s going to be front and center for the next election, and the candidates that recognize this quicker will end up
with the edge going into 2016.

All of which adds up to the fact that marijuana will be a mainstream election issue that 2016 candidates will need to grapple with, according to
John Hudak of the Brookings Institution. Some Republicans are eager to frame the topic as a states-rights issue, while others, like Rand Paul,
approach it from the standpoint of criminal justice reform and fiscal responsibility. Democrats can capitalize on the issue to reach out to their
young voter base and engage them on questions of social and racial justice.

Overall, Hudak concludes that “in some ways marijuana policy is the perfect issue for a presidential campaign. It has far reaching consequences that
both parties have reason to engage.” While it won’t rise to the level of a litmus test issue for most voters, candidates won’t be able to avoid
talking about it — or they’ll do so at their own peril.

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