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POLITICS: Campaigns

Could marijuana be the key to 2014 turnout?

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Polls,2014 Elections,Campaigns,Ashe Schow,Marijuana,Medical Marijuana,Drug Legalization

Having marijuana legalization on the ballot could entice some Americans to come out to the polls during the 2014 midterm elections, when turnout is usually low, according to a new poll from George Washington University.

It found 69 percent of respondents said they would be “much more” or “somewhat more” likely to vote if a proposal to legalize marijuana were on the ballot.

Seventy-three percent of respondents said they favored legalization of medical marijuana, and 53 percent were in favor of decriminalizing possession of the substance.

The issue is seen as a big concern for the youth and a possible way to drive out the youth vote, something that could help Democrats in the election.

The GWU poll, however, found that respondents between 45 and 64 were the most likely to express a strong preference to vote if marijuana legalization was on the ballot, according to the National Journal. So the youth vote that Democrats need may be out of the question.

Further, 53 percent said they disapproved of Obamacare, which is a big issue for Democrats this year. President Obama's declining poll numbers also continue to drag down the party.

Oh, and get this, all that anti-Koch brothers rhetoric the Democrats have been using? Turns out it's not really working, as 52 percent of respondents didn't even know who they were. Maybe singling out private citizens as evil isn't the best campaign strategy.

But don’t think Republicans have an easy path to 2014 victory. Democrats are seen as more credible when it comes to solving problems, standing up for the middle class and representing middle-class values.

But Republicans are seen as more trustworthy on the economy, federal spending and taxes, so if people vote with their wallets, the GOP may yet conquer.

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