Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle inspects her ballot before turning it in at Shoesmith Elementary School in Chicago on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. Preckwinkle supported the nonbinding marijuana referendum. (Max Herman/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

Chicago voters back recreational marijuana referendum

CHICAGO — Voters in the Illinois county that includes Chicago have backed the recreational use of marijuana in a nonbinding referendum.

Tuesday’s question for Cook County voters asked if Illinois should legalize “the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, testing, and sale of marijuana and marijuana products for recreational use by adults 21 and older.”

Although the referendum is advisory only, the vote could help state lawmakers make their case for the legalization of marijuana use.

Supporters of legalizing and taxing marijuana for adults contend it could boost revenue for state and local governments, as it has elsewhere. Opponents of legalized marijuana use have raised questions about the social cost and subversion of federal laws.