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Survey: Support for Legalizing Marijuana Doubled

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Survey: Support for Legalizing Marijuana Doubled

Cannabis plant

Photo: Wikipedia - Cannabis Training University.

A recent survey by Market and Media Research (MMR) found that almost a quarter of Icelanders 18 years and older, or 24.3 percent, now support legalizing marijuana—up from 12.7 percent in 2011.

Thereof 9.5 percent said they were very supportive and 14.8 percent said they were somewhat supportive—in contrast to 5.1 percent and 7.6 percent, respectively, four years ago. Similarly 60.2 percent now described themselves as very opposed to legalization and 15.5 percent as somewhat opposed—compared to 75.2 percent and 12.1 percent in 2011.

Significant differences were observed in the responses of various demographics, with 31.4 percent of men saying they were either somewhat or very supportive, compared to only 16.5 percent of women. Age groups were similarly divided on the issue—42.6 percent of 18-29 year olds were in support, 22.6 percent of those 30-49, 14.6 percent of those 50-67 and a mere 3.0 percent of those 68 plus.

While geographic location had a seemingly negligible effect, with 24.9 percent of metropolitan area residents in support, compared to 23.4 percent of rural residents, household income appeared a major factor. A total of 44.3 percent of those belonging to households in the lowest income bracket, earning less than ISK 250,000 (USD 1,875; EUR 1,700) per month, said they were supportive of legalization, while only 23.6 percent of those in the top bracket, earning ISK 1 million or more per month, agreed.

Among those identifying with particular political parties, some variation was observed. Of those who affiliated with the Progressive Party, the Independence Party the Social Democrats, the Left-Green Party or Bright Future 11.3 percent, 15.8 percent, 13.5, 11.2 percent and 18.6 percent, respectively, were in support of legalization. Most significantly, 46.2 percent of those identifying with the Pirate Party were in support.

Finally 12.9 percent of those who answered yes when asked whether they supported the current government, favored legalization, compared to 28 percent of those answered no.

A total of 1001 individuals, randomly selected from the national registry to reflect the actual composition of the population, were surveyed between April 16 and 21, 2015.

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