Pubdate: Fri, 30 Jan 2004
Source: North County Times (CA)
Copyright: 2004 North County Times
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)
Bookmark: (Cannabis - California)


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- The use of medical marijuana has gained greater 
support among Californians since 1996, when voters passed a pioneering 
initiative that allowed doctors to recommend pot to patients, according to 
a Field poll released Friday.

About 74 percent of Californians now favor legal protections for patients 
who use marijuana to treat a medical condition, compared with the 56 
percent of voters who approved Proposition 215 eight years ago, according 
to the survey of 500 registered voters.

The poll found increasing support for medical marijuana across all segments 
of California's population. About 83 percent of Democrats, 63 percent of 
Republicans, 92 percent of liberals and 53 percent of conservatives now 
favor Proposition 215.

The poll also found that 50 percent of Californians surveyed believed that 
using marijuana isn't any more dangerous than using alcohol, compared with 
44 percent in 1983 and 16 percent in 1969. But 56 percent of voters still 
oppose the legalization of marijuana for general use. The federal 
government, however, continues to fight medical marijuana use, raiding pot 
clubs and prosecuting suppliers and growers. Under federal law, marijuana 
is classified as an illegal and dangerous drug with no legitimate medical use.
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