While the majority of Americans support marijuana legalization, Democrats support the issue slightly more than Republicans and Independents. But apparently even within the Democratic Party, there is still a divide on cannabis.
Gallup recently conducted a poll about the changes in the Democratic Party in the 21st century. The biggest change is more people consider themselves to be liberal Democrats as opposed to moderate or conservative ones. And while conservative, moderate and liberal Democrats agree on most issues, there are a few where there are divides. Marijuana legalization is one of them.
According to the Gallup poll, about 81 percent of liberal Democrats support marijuana legalization, compared to only 62 percent of moderate Democrats and only 44 percent of conservative Democrats. Marijuana legalization had one of the biggest divides between liberal Democrats and conservative Democrats.
But the Gallup survey also showed that the power of conservative Democrats is dwindling in America. Only 17 percent of Democrats identify as "conservative" today, compared 23 percent in 2001. Meanwhile 46 percent of Democrats identify as liberal, which was only 32 percent of the party in 2001. So conservative Democrats may not be as keen to legalize marijuana, but they're becoming a smaller and smaller voice within the party, and may not be able to affect the party's policy as much as they once did.
It should also be mentioned that while only 44 percent of conservative Democrats support marijuana legalization, that number was only 29 percent in 2001. So even conservative members of the party are embracing the issue in greater numbers than in the past.