Johnson's Numbers Nose-Dive 

Johnson's Numbers Nose-Dive 
Posted by FoM on March 22, 2000 at 18:53:23 PT
By Loie Fecteau, Journal Capitol Bureau
Source: ABQjournal
Gov. Gary Johnson's voter approval rating plunged nearly 20 points in the past year, declining from a 54 percent level to 35 percent last week, according to a new Journal poll.   At the same time, more than two-thirds of the New Mexico voters surveyed called Johnson's recent push for marijuana and heroin legalization a bad idea. 
  In the latest Journal survey on voter regard for his job performance, Johnson's disapproval rating climbed above his approval rating for the first time since he took office in 1995.   Forty-four percent said they disapproved of the job Johnson is doing as governor. Sixteen percent had mixed feelings and 5 percent were undecided.   "Johnson maintained good numbers for five years, but then, all of a sudden in this past year, his approval rating plummeted ... ," said Brian Sanderoff of Research and Polling Inc., which conducted the March 14-16 poll, as well as the earlier ones.   Sanderoff said he believes Johnson's drop in popularity is linked to the Republican governor's highly publicized criticism of the nation's "war on drugs" and his advocacy of legalizing such drugs as marijuana and heroin. Critics of the move have ranged from members of his own party back home to White House drug policy chief Barry McCaffrey.   "I believe that the governor's significant drop in approval is attributable primarily to his stance on drug reform," Sanderoff said.   Sixty-eight percent of the registered voters polled said the governor's proposal that drugs such as marijuana and heroin should be legal is a bad idea. Sixteen percent said it is a good idea, while 13 percent had mixed feelings and 3 percent were undecided.   Voters were asked: "Gov. Gary Johnson has said the nation's 'war on drugs' has been a failure and that certain drugs, such as marijuana and heroin, should be legalized in order to be regulated and taxed. Do you think this is a good idea or a bad idea?"   Sixty-nine percent of the Republican voters said Johnson's drug legalization idea is a bad idea and 14 percent said it is a good idea. Among Democrats, 74 percent were against legalizing drugs compared with 15 percent who said it is a good idea.   Support for Johnson's push was strongest among independents, voters 18 to 34 years old and people living in the Albuquerque metropolitan area, Sanderoff said.   Among Hispanic respondents, 84 percent said Johnson's proposal is a bad idea, while 9 percent said it is a good idea.   Sixty percent of Anglo respondents opposed Johnson on the drug question, while 20 percent said it was a good idea. Seventeen percent had mixed feelings and 3 percent were undecided.   Johnson's approval rating has fallen nearly 30 percentage points over the last year among fellow Republicans -- a sharper drop than it has been among voters at large, Sanderoff said.   In an April 1999 Journal poll, 81 percent of registered Republicans approved of the job Johnson was doing as governor, while 52 percent approved in the new poll.   Among registered Democrats, Johnson's approval rating dropped by 14 percentage points over the last year, from 37 percent to 23 percent, according to Journal surveys.   "He's experienced a dramatic reduction in approval ratings among members of his party, the Republicans, and his erosion of support among Republicans was twice as much as his drop among Democrats," Sanderoff said. "This supports that the drop is related to the drug issue ... . I mean he's not getting in trouble with Republicans because he's fighting with Manny and Raymond," Sanderoff said, referring to Senate President Pro Tem Manny Aragon, D-Albuquerque, and House Speaker Raymond Sanchez, D-Albuquerque.   Johnson's approval ratings reached an all-time high in September 1998 during his re-election battle against former Albuquerque Mayor Martin Chávez, a Democrat.   Sixty-one percent of registered voters surveyed in a Journal poll during that 1998 race said they approved of Johnson's job performance.   That was a 16-point jump from a 1996 Journal poll when Johnson was feuding with Democratic legislators over prison construction plans and state courts had nixed his Indian gaming compacts and budget-trimming plans.   Johnson has said he does not intend to seek another political office.   The new Journal poll is based on telephone interviews with 408 registered voters statewide that were conducted March 14-16. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percentage points. Call the Journal: 505-823-3800Published: Wednesday, March 22, 2000 Copyright © 1997 - 2000 Albuquerque JournalCannabisNews Articles on Governor Johnson & Loie Fecteau:
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Comment #6 posted by Jay on April 20, 2001 at 07:21:35 PT
Some of you may consider Gary's decision as governor political suicide. I realize that may be truthful, however at least he stands up for the citizens of the U.S.A. as a whole. If our country didn't throw out so much false propaganda Gary probably would not be put in the situation that he's in right now. Hopefully he has sparked enough debate that this issue will be reviewed and hopefully laws will be restructured. The citizens of New Mexico and the whole union need to support Gary in his pursuit for true freedom for all citizens.
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Comment #5 posted by Chares Doyle on March 27, 2000 at 13:34:51 PT
Gov. Johnson,New Mexico
   If there were a 21st century version of President   Kennedy's Profiles in Courage. Gov. Johnson would   have to have a chapter dedicated to his efforts in   ridding our society once and for all of the unjust   and unconstitutioal laws against Hemp and over Two   million Americans and their families.
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Comment #4 posted by MMM on March 23, 2000 at 11:49:38 PT
Johnson did good. Hopefully it was the media who misinterpreted his message. Holland's example proves that there's lower hard drug use when marijuana is allowed. Of course, you won't see this info plastered in the media because major industries would lose a lot of $$$ FAST. 
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Comment #3 posted by dddd on March 23, 2000 at 00:23:54 PT
Observers observation
Right on Observer
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Comment #2 posted by observer on March 22, 2000 at 21:39:23 PT
Let Me Craft Survey!
> At the same time, more than two-thirds of the New Mexico voters surveyed called Johnson's recent push for marijuana and heroin legalization a bad idea. . .Note now detractors of this idea like to lump together "marijuana and heroin" as if he had suggested treating them the same way. He didn't. Typical prohibitionist trick: lump all drugs together, and impute the effects of the worst drug to the whole lot... Such "surveys" (designed and taken by ABQjournal, a mainstream publication that had been one of Johnson's detractors from the get-go) seem to be designed to elicit exactly the response they got.Let another survey ask this question. It would be along these lines: "The American Declaration of Independence states that all have the right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. Should adult Americans be thrown in jail for using cannabis, or should Amercians have returned to them the traditional freedom use age-old plant remedies that big drug companies can't patent and charge you for?"Yeah, let me design one of those "surveys"!
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Comment #1 posted by Josh on March 22, 2000 at 20:18:59 PT:
Political Suicide
This is more proof of the political suicide polititions must go through for supporting reform stances on the War on Drugs. He wasn't able to express his views on the war until he knew he would no longer be running for political office. I admire the ball that the Governer had when he came out and spoke the truth;that we are losing. This also shows how uneducated the general public is on the war on drugs. Don't think the only reason we say Legalize is because we want to get high. We want to see our tax dollars spent preventing drug abuse and promoting rehabilitation rather than prisons. Want to draw the line between drug use and drug abuse. I could go on forever but now isn't the time nor the place. Gov. Johnson had the guts to commit political suicide to promote the ideas he believes in. Most polititions, even if they share his view, would NEVER come out and say it. 
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