Welcome to the big leagues, medical marijuana. And by that, I mean the public-relations big leagues.
Example -- a new poll conducted for Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation showing that "64 percent of voters said they would approve proposals that would establish state-licensed marijuana dispensaries to cultivate and provide marijuana to patients with doctors' recommendations."
There are some gaps in the survey, described as "a statistically valid random sample drawn from a current list of registered voters." But overall, it's an extremely professional piece of work, and no wonder, since it was sent out under the auspices of Communications Strategy Group, a PR firm whose client list ranges from Charles Schwab and Denver's Four Seasons Hotel to assorted groups associated with the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
Work this slick doesn't come cheap -- which further emphasizes the money to be made from this particular strain of green. Check out the poll results below:
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POLL BY COLORADANS FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA REGULATION FINDS OVERWHELMING SUPPORT FOR LICENSED DISPENSARIES
Medical marijuana campaign seeks responsible regulation that aligns with voter sentiment
DENVER, CO -- December 1, 2009 -- Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation, a coalition of medical marijuana patients and providers supporting responsible regulation of medical marijuana, today released a statewide poll illustrating that Colorado voters overwhelmingly favor regulating state-licensed dispensaries to serve persons who are suffering from debilitating medical conditions.
By a margin of two-to-one, 64 percent of voters said they would approve proposals that would establish state-licensed marijuana dispensaries to cultivate and provide marijuana to patients with doctors' recommendations. Just 32 percent said they would reject it.
"This is a powerful endorsement by Coloradans that medical marijuana dispensaries are valid businesses that need to be regulated in order to protect patients and providers," said Matt Brown, Executive Director of Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation. "As with any other industry, it is now critical that we develop tax and fee structures and put the appropriate regulations in place to ensure these businesses can responsibly serve the needs of their patients and the community."
Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation formed earlier this year to provide a leading voice for the emerging medical marijuana business community. The coalition supports the creation of reasonable regulations that protect patient choice and incorporate best practices within existing regulatory structures.
"Our campaign goal is to work with all parties to ensure safe, responsible access to and use of medical marijuana," said Brown. "Colorado has the opportunity to take the lead and set the standard for what a responsible medical marijuana industry should look like."
The telephone survey of 500 Colorado voters who are likely to participate in the 2010 general election was conducted November 6-9, 2009, using a statistically valid random sample drawn from a current list of registered voters.
Other survey results found wide support for a state-licensed dispensary system within every major demographic group:
A total of 64 percent of both men and women said they would support the dispensary system model.
A majority of registered Republicans (53%), Independents (64%) and Democrats (75%), supported the proposed dispensary system.
A majority of people within every age group backed the proposal, with the highest levels of support among the over 55 (64%) and under 35 (71%) age groups.
White voters (65%) supported the proposal at a slightly higher rate than non-white voters (61%).
Metro Denver was the most supportive area in the state (69%), along with Denver (68%) and the South Front Range (64%). Fifty-two percent of voters in the Western Slope were supportive.
Now I am going to read you some proposals that voters might be voting on in the election next November. This proposal would (1) establish state-licensed marijuana dispensaries to cultivate and provide marijuana to patients with doctors' recommendations; (2) allow local governments to set limits on the number of dispensaries and to enact zoning regulations applicable to the dispensaries; and (3) require patients to be registered with the state and set a limit on the amount of marijuana patients can acquire through the dispensary system.
If the election were held today, would you vote yes or no on this proposal?
(IF R NEEDS CLARIFICATION:) A "yes" vote would be a vote to approve the proposal; a "no" vote would be a vote to reject the proposal. (IF YES/NO:) Do you feel strongly or not so strongly about that?
(IF UNDECIDED:) Well, which way would you say you are leaning?
Strong yes 34% Not strongly yes 19% Lean yes 10% Lean no 4% Not strongly no 6% Strongly no 23% Hard undecided (VOL.) 3 REFUSED -- DK/NA --
Total Yes: 64% Total No: 32%
About Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation
Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation is a coalition of medical marijuana patients and providers supporting responsible regulation of medical marijuana. Formed in 2009, the coalition is actively engaged with Colorado legislators and law enforcement officers to establish criteria for the responsible regulation of medical marijuana in order to to make a positive difference in people's lives. For more information, please call 303.335.0834.