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The day in cannabis: Medical marijuana group rebrands, Pew poll shows majority want legalization


Two developments on the marijuana front today, one in Florida and one nationally.

The group People United for Medical Marijuana (PUFMM, get it?) is rebranding its effort to put medical marijuana on the ballot. Its new website: United for Care. The group is now being led by Florida trial attorney John Morgan and Ben Pollara, a top Democratic fundraiser. Libertarian and former Republican Roger Stone gives it a bipartisan feel. Coming soon: More Republicans to give it a multi-partisan flavor.

Nationally, the Pew Research Center release a poll showing that national attitudes toward marijuana are trending greener by the day:

"For the first time in more than four decades of polling on the issue, a majority of Americans favor legalizing the use of marijuana. A national survey finds that 52% say that the use of marijuana should be made legal while 45% say it should not.

"Support for legalizing marijuana has risen 11 points since 2010. The change is even more dramatic since the late 1960s. A 1969 Gallup survey found that just 12% favored legalizing marijuana use, while 84% were opposed."

Two years ago, Gallup found a "record high" number of Americans favored legalizing it, 50%. And more than 64% percent of Americans, according to another Gallup poll, say the federal government shouldn't enforce federal anti-pot laws in the places where marijuana has been decriminalized.

Floridians aren't quite ready to say they're for outright decriminalization, according to the last poll paid for by PUFFM. But the poll indicates Floridians think it should be treated more like a speeding ticket than  a lock-em-up crime.

That poll, however, did indicate that more than 7 in 10 Florida voters favored medical marijuana. That link is here. Two years ago, about 6 in 10 favored medical marijuana in Florida. That link is here.

What's the Florida Legislature doing in the face of increasing public support? It's refusing to even hear bills to allow for medical marijuana. The issue doesn't even merit a vote. But the Legislature is hearing a measure to stop the sale of bongs.

On that note, we'll leave you with one last poll number: 52% of Florida voters disapprove of the job the Legislature is doing and only 25% approve, according to Quinnipiac University's last survey.