Alito During Gay Marriage Arguments: What About Polygamy?

REUTERS/Larry Downing

Scott Greer Contributor
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The Supreme Court began hearing arguments on four cases that could legalize gay marriage throughout America Tuesday, and Justice Samuel Alito had a question for the lawyers arguing for the unions: what about polygamy?

Alito wondered that if same-sex unions are sanctioned, would that mean the Constitution also guarantees the right for polygamous arrangements.

According to The New York Times, the conservative justice offered the court a hypothetical scenario where four people — two men, two women — wanted to marry and whether it was reasonable to allow them to do so.

“They are all consenting adults. Highly educated. They are all lawyers. What would be the logic of denying them the same right?” Alito asked, which drew laughs from the court audience.

The attorney representing plaintiffs seeking to overturn gay marriage bans, Mary Bonauto, replied that that would not be the case since polygamy brings up a host of “complicated” issues that involve “consent” and “coercion,” The Washington Post reports.

According to reports, the court seemed divided on the issue Tuesday after hearing nearly three hours of oral arguments. The consolidated cases before the courts stem from attempts to overturn gay marriage bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee.

Scott Greer