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Florida: Poll shows strong support for medical marijuana after Senate approval

A new poll from Quinnipiac University indicates that an alarming 80% of Floridians support the legalization of medical marijuana.

When Peter A. Brown announced the results of Quinnipiac University's latest poll to the public, he didn't mince words: "If Vegas were giving odds on medical marijuana becoming legal in Florida," he said, "the bookies would be betting heavily." After the new poll's results were made public on Monday, it's pretty easy to see why Brown was so plainspoken.

The poll claims that of a cross-section of Floridians, a staggering 88 percent of voters were in support of the legalization of medical marijuana. In every single polled demographic and age group, Florida citizens overwhelmingly supported the institution of medical marijuana by a more than 80 percent margin. The numbers dropped slightly when voters were asked how they felt about the legalization of recreational marijuana, with only 53 percent of those polled supporting that initiative.

The poll comes in the wake of a small victory for medical marijuana advocates in Florida. Last Thursday, the Florida State Senate approved by a huge margin a bill that would allow certain patients access to "Charlotte's Web" - a strain of cannabis that is low in the stuff that makes you high (THC) and high in the stuff that sets you straight (CBD). "Charlotte's Web" has already shown promise in several other cases, most notably in small children with chronic siezures.

Similar legislation has already been passed in six other states this year: Alabama, Iowa, Kentucky, Utah, Mississippi, and Wisconsin.

Even though CBD is legal in Florida in some rare cases, don't expect medical or recreational marijuana to find its way to the Sunshine State any time soon. In spite of the fact that there is currently pending legislation headed to this year's ballot, there is still a lot of resistance to the idea of readily available weed. House Speaker (and Republican) Will Weatherford said the proposal to legalize medical marijuana is "about the Coloradofication of Florida, where the end game is a pot shop on every street corner."

According to the poll numbers, it seems most Floridians wouldn't have a problem with that.

Now, at the risk of totally undercutting the previous point, it should be noted that the poll surveyed a total of 1,413 registered Florida voters over the course of 5 days. To give you an idea of how extensive that poll was, in 2012 the population of Florida was 19.32 million people. So, that means that this poll represents about .0001 percent of the population of Florida (and to get a number that big I still had to round up).

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