A new poll released Tuesday shows that Americans think marijuana should be legalized make up the majority, according to NBC News. The poll was conducted by Gallup poll.

Fifty-eight percent of the population is in favor of legalizing the drug, an increase of 10 percent since Gallup conducted the same poll last year. The poll surveyed 1,028 people over the phone between October 3-6.

People favoring legalization do tend to be young and liberal. However, the largest increase in support came from people that identified themselves as independent, with sixty-two percent of independents in 2013, an increase of 12 percentage points since the last time the poll was conducted. Sixty-five percent of Democrats favor legalization, while only 35 percent of Republicans do.

"Americans are increasingly recognizing that marijuana is less harmful than they've been led to believe," Mason Tvert, a spokesperson for Marijuana Policy Project, told NBC News. "I think it's time to regulate marijuana like alcohol and most Americans seem to agree.

"We're seeing support for ending prohibition in states across the country and efforts are being made to change state laws," Tvert continued.

Currently, there are twenty states, as well as the District of Columbia, that permit marijuana use for medical purposes. Two states, Washington and Colorado, permit recreational use. However, marijuana is still an illegal drug at the federal level and it's categorized as a hallucinogen by the Drug enforcement Agency (DEA).

Gallup first began tracking support for the legalization of marijuana in 1969. At that time, only 12 percent of the population supported legalization. By the 1970s, the figure had doubled to reach 28 percent and by 2011 it had reached 50 percent.

A Gallup poll that was released in August found that 38 percent of the population had tried marijuana.

There is still opposition, however.

"I'm concerned that these people that are saying that they are favoring legalization are really not aware or knowledgeable about the marijuana that's out there today," Carla Lowe, the founder of Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana, told NBC News.

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News coverage of the poll results.