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Marijuana vs. Online Gambling [AUDIO]

This may sound surprising, but more Americans would prefer to legalize marijuana for recreational use than online gambling, according to the most recent national survey from Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind.

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By a ratio of more than two-to-one, respondents say legalized marijuana (52 percent) is preferable to online gambling (20 percent).

While New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada are the only three states that permit online gambling, as many as 10 states are considering legislation. The poll found that a majority of Americans are not following news about the issue very closely, but when asked if they favor or oppose allowing casinos to run online gambling for people in their states, two-thirds, or 63 percent, are opposed with a quarter, or 27 percent, who approve.

“There were some interesting gender differences, which is something we have seen repeatedly when we’ve asked questions about online gambling; men are more supportive of allowing it as opposed to women,” said Krista Jenkins, director of PublicMind at Fairleigh Dickinson University. “We’ve polled on this issue for many years and these are attitudes that appear to not be changing much at all. Every time we’ve asked this question, we’ve usually gotten two-thirds of respondents who have said they are opposed to online gambling. When it comes to marijuana legalization, 50 percent favor the legalization of recreational marijuana compared with 44 percent who are opposed.”

The poll finds that almost nine in 10 Americans, or 86 percent, have heard or read a lot or some about legalization of marijuana with the majority, or 58 percent, who express the most attentiveness.

Age is also a factor in who supports the legalization of marijuana and who does not, according to the poll.

“Younger people, the millennials and the Generation X-ers, are more supportive as compared with the baby boomers and the World War II generation,” Jenkins said. “Partisanship is also a dividing gap on the issue with Democrats more supportive than Republicans, which isn’t necessarily surprising.”

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