Another year, another well-respected national poll confirms that a majority of Americans think that marijuana should be legal under federal law.
In April 2013, Pew Research found that for the first time since it began polling people back in the 1970s, most Americans thought pot should be legal. Now, CBS News has found that a majority of respondents favor marijuana legalization. It's a view shared by 51 percent of those polled versus just 44 percent who still oppose legal weed.
But what else did the poll find?
The poll confirms that attitudes about pot have shifted radically in just the past few years. For example, CBS found, as recently as October 2011, when Obama began a crackdown on California's medical marijuana industry, the same percentage of Americans that now favor legalization–51 percent–still opposed it. And in April 2013, the poll showed Americans evenly divided on the question, with 45 percent in favor and 45 percent opposed.
Some other interesting findings:
*In 1979, a whopping 69 percent of Americans opposed pot legalization
*The only group of Americans who still oppose legal pot are those 65 and older
*59 percent of Democrats and 72 percent of "liberals" favor legalization while 61 percent of both conservatives and Republicans oppose it
*While most Americans also favor medical marijuana, only a third believe that most people allowed to smoke it under state medical marijuana laws are actually sick.