The number of Americans who support the War on Drugs is getting lower and lower. In the most recent poll by Rasmussen, only four percent said they think the United States is winning the War on Drugs. That’s down from 7 percent in November. The number who think the United States is losing remains steady at an overwhelming 82 percent, with 13 percent undecided.
The so-called “War on Drugs” declared by President Richard Nixon in 1971, has turned out to be an expensive and violent international prohibition endeavor, that, more than 40 years later, is partially to blame for the United States’ bloated prison population.
The latest poll came just as Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he would shift his law enforcement priorities away from long prison sentences for drug offenders. Fifty-five percent of those surveyed just after the announcement agreed there are too many people in America’s prisons, and 51 percent agreed with Holder’s approach to limit the number of mandatory minimum prison sentences.
In the poll, which tends to skew conservative, more respondents (44 percent) supported marijuana legalization than opposed it (42 percent). But the percentage of support for marijuana legalization is still lower than in other polls. A Pew poll in April found that a majority of Americans support marijuana legalization. According to the Rasmussen poll, 11 percent even support legalizing and regulating cocaine like alcohol and tobacco.