This week’s controversial ruling on same-sex marriage in America could open the way to “multi-partner marriage”, according to a polygamy activist.
On Wednesday, the highest court in the country struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) relating to benefits for same-sex couples.
A leading polyamory educator and advocate warmly welcomed the controversial ruling.
Anita Wagner Illig, told a US news source: “We polyamorists are grateful to our brothers and sisters for blazing the marriage equality trail.”
She said: “I would absolutely want to seek multi-partner marriage – it would eliminate a common challenge polyamorists face when two are legally married and others in their group relationships aren’t part of that marriage.”
She added: “A favorable outcome for marriage equality is a favorable outcome for multi-partner marriage, because the opposition cannot argue lack of precedent for legalizing marriage for other forms of non-traditional relationships”.
Anita Wagner Illig did concede however that the introduction of legal benefits of marriage involving more than two people would be unprecedented.
And Anne Wilde, co-foudner of polygamy advocacy group “Principle Voices” said she was “very glad” about the Supreme Court’s decision.
She said: “I think people are more and more understanding that as consenting adults, we should be able to raise a family however we choose.”
Many opposed to the redefinition of marriage have warned that legalising polygamy could be the next step.
In Brazil, where same-sex unions have been legally recognised since 2004, three people in a polygamous relationship have been allowed to enter into a civil union.
The Coalition for Marriage which campaigns against the redefinition of marriage, has commented: “If consensual love between adults is the defining factor as to whether people should be joined in a state-recognised marriage-type union, then there is no logical reason for restricting that union to two people.”