Voters supported marijuana legalization in all 18 referendums held around the state Tuesday, sending a strong message to police, prosecutors and policy makers that Wisconsin residents want to see change in cannabis laws.

Even in the City of Waukesha, where Republican Gov. Scott Walker grabbed 58 percent of the vote in his unsuccessful re-election bid, 77 percent of voters approved a medical marijuana referendum.

And in Eau Claire County, just 15 percent of voters said the existing criminal statutes should stay on the books, while 54 percent supported legalizing recreational use for adults.

The referendums are not binding. The Wisconsin Justice Initiative worked with partners around the state to have the measures placed on the ballot.

Other results from around the state, as reported by county websites, are below. Referendum wording is via Marijuana Moment.

Brown County: Should cannabis be legalized in Wisconsin for medicinal purposes, and regulated in the same manner as other prescription drugs?

  • Yes: 76 percent
  • No: 24 percent

Clark County: Should the State of Wisconsin legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes and regulate its use in the same manner as other prescription drugs?

  • Yes: 67 percent
  • No: 33 percent

Dane County: Should marijuana be legalized, taxed and regulated in the same manner as alcohol for adults 21 years of age or older?

  • Yes: 76 percent
  • No: 24 percent

Eau Claire County: Should cannabis (choose one):

(a) Be legal for adult, 21 years of age and older, recreational or medical use, taxed and regulated like alcohol, with the proceeds from the taxes used for education, healthcare, and infrastructure in Wisconsin?

  • Yes: 54 percent

(b) Be legal for medical purposes only and available only by prescription through a medical dispensary?

  • Yes: 31 percent

(c) Remain a criminally illegal drug as provided under current law?

  • Yes: 15 percent

Forest County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical purposes, if those individuals have a written recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 79 percent
  • No: 21 percent

Kenosha County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical purposes, if those individuals have a written recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 88 percent
  • No: 12 percent

La Crosse County: Should the State of Wisconsin legalize the use of marijuana by adults 21 years or older, to be taxed and regulated in the same manner that alcohol is regulated in the State of Wisconsin, with proceeds from taxes used for education, healthcare, and infrastructure?

  • Yes: 63 percent
  • No: 37 percent

Langlade County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical purposes, if those individuals have a written recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 77 percent
  • No: 23 percent

Lincoln County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical purposes, if those individuals have a written recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 81 percent
  • No:  19 percent

Marathon County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical purposes, if those individuals have a written recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 82 percent
  • No:  18 percent

Marquette County: Resolved, that “We the People” of Marquette County, Wisconsin support the right of its citizens to acquire, possess and use medical cannabis upon the recommendation of a licensed physician, and;

Be It Further Resolved, that we strongly support a statewide referendum Wisconsin to join the thirty-two (32) states that have already approved the use of medical cannabis for the treatment of chronic pain, several debilitating diseases and disabling symptoms.

  • Yes: 78 percent
  • No:  22 percent

Milwaukee County: Do you favor allowing adults 21 years of age and older to engage in the personal use of marijuana, while also regulating commercial marijuana-related activities, and imposing a tax on the sale of marijuana?

  • Yes: 70 percent
  • No:  30 percent

Portage County: Should the State of Wisconsin allow individuals with debilitating medical conditions to use and safely access marijuana for medical [treatment] purposes, if those individuals have a written [treatment] recommendation from a licensed Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 83 percent
  • No:  17 percent

Racine County: 

Question No. 1: Should marijuana be legalized for medicinal use?

  • Yes: 85 percent
  • No:  15 percent

Question No. 2: Should marijuana be legalized, taxed, and regulated in the same manner as alcohol for adults 21 years of age or older?

  • Yes: 59 percent
  • No:  41 percent

Question No. 3: Should proceeds from marijuana taxes be used to fund education, health care, and infrastructure?

  • Yes: 81 percent
  • No:  19 percent

Rock County: Should cannabis be legalized for adult use, taxed and regulated like alcohol, with the proceeds from the taxes used for education, healthcare, and infrastructure?

  • Yes: 69 percent
  • No:  31 percent

Sauk County: Should the state of Wisconsin legalize medical marijuana so that people with debilitating medical conditions may access medical marijuana if they have a prescription from a licenses Wisconsin physician?

  • Yes: 80 percent
  • No:  20 percent

Racine City: 

Question No. 1: Should cannabis be legalized for adult recreational use in Wisconsin?

  • Yes: 66 percent
  • No:  34 percent

Question 2: Should cannabis be legalized for medical use in Wisconsin?

  • Yes: 88 percent
  • No:  12 percent

Question 3: Should cannabis sales be taxed and the revenue from such taxes be used for public education, health care, and infrastructure in Wisconsin?

  • Yes: 83 percent
  • No:  17 percent

Question 4: Should cannabis be decriminalized in the State of Wisconsin?

  • Yes: 72 percent
  • No:  28 percent

Waukesha: Should cannabis be legalized in Wisconsin for medicinal purposes, and regulated in the same manner as other prescription drugs?

  • Yes: 77 percent
  • No: 23 percent




Gretchen Schuldt is executive director of the Wisconsin Justice Initiative.

Wisconsin Justice Initiative Mission

To advocate for progressive change in the Wisconsin justice system by educating the public about its real-life impacts and partnering with other organizations to achieve more just outcomes.


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