According to a Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll, 80 percent of Iowans support legalizing cannabis for medical purposes; yet, just 39 percent indicated support for a recreational market. In a 2013 poll, just 58 percent supported a medical program, with 29 percent in support of a recreational cannabis market.
The poll found strong majorities among age groups and political affiliation with 88 percent of young adults, and 87 percent of Democrats supporting medical cannabis access; along with 66 percent of Republicans, 67 percent of senior citizens, and 87 percent of registered independents. Additionally, 76 percent of Protestants, 79 percent of Catholics, and 91 percent of those claiming no religious affiliation backed medical cannabis legalization. Rural residents were less likely to favor the issue than their city-dwelling counterparts, 73 percent to 82 percent respectively.
Iowa currently has a medical cannabis pilot program, which is set to expire this summer. The limited program allows patients with epilepsy to possess cannabis oils high in CBD with minimal THC content, however, it doesn’t provide for distribution of the oils, which leaves patients without access to their medicine or forces them to break federal law by obtaining it out-of-state.
According to the report, there are at least three bills in the state legislature aimed at the state’s medical cannabis program.