Herbert signs polygamy bill into Utah law

Source: The Salt Lake Tribune


Gov. Gary Herbert on Tuesday signed a bill that keeps polygamy a felony in Utah and increases the penalties for polygamists convicted of committing frauds and abuses.

Herbert’s approval of HB99 affirms the position Utah has held since statehood — that polygamy is against the law. Yet it’s unclear how much of the bill will ever be used.

Polygamists and some sympathetic attorneys have said HB99 will be unconstitutional if it’s applied to consenting adults who choose to live as such a family. Joe Darger, who has three wives and was the most vocal opponent of the bill, has dared prosecutors to charge him.

Darger doesn’t think that will happen. After Herbert signed the bill Tuesday, Darger said the goal of HB99 appeared to be to keep polygamists silent by making their lifestyles a crime.

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  1. In a way the whole thing is a joke. OK, the ‘law’ (of the country) recognizes only one wife, so the rest will be ‘partners’ or ‘lovers’ or what-ever ‘non-wife’ description you would like to make. As there is no law against ‘concubinage’ those who are willing can live together as they like. (The law against ‘concubinage’ (living together without being married) was canceled in Switzerland may be around 50 years ago. (don’t know dates in USA)…

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