Anti-polygamy group opposes Utah’s Amendment 3

SALT LAKE CITY — An anti-polygamy group came out in opposition Monday to Utah’s gay marriage amendment, saying polygamists could use it to avoid prosecution.

Tapestry Against Polygamy said Amendment 3 could become a tool for polygamists to avoid prosecution if the proposed amendment is passed by voters Nov. 2.

The amendment says: “Marriage consists only of the legal union between a man and a woman. No other domestic union, however denominated, may be recognized as a marriage or given the same or substantially equivalent effect.”

For many opponents of the amendment, the second part is the sticking point. Opponents argue it could endanger Utah’s common law marriage statute and say it makes it impossible for a couple to visit each other in the hospital, throws into question automatic inheritance benefits and invalidates health insurance benefits.

Polygamists usually only get marriage certificates for their first marriage, any other marriage is considered a domestic union that the state recognizes as marriages for purposes of prosecuting polygamy.

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The Associated Press, USA
Oct. 12, 2004

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This post was last updated: Nov. 22, 2013