Feb 19, 2016

New polygamy ban gets OK from lawmakers despite opposition


The Associated Press  

February 19th, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A proposal to revive Utah's polygamy ban is moving forward despite opposition from polygamists who told lawmakers it would wrongly keep families like theirs in the shadows.

A committee of Utah lawmakers approved the bill Friday after its sponsor softened the penalty from a felony to a misdemeanor. It now advances to the House floor.

Republican Rep. Mike Noel of Kanab says his plan wouldn't change Utah's long-standing policy against prosecuting consenting adult polygamists.

He says the measure is designed to narrow the definition of the crime and halt a lawsuit filed by the family from the reality show "Sister Wives." They scored a legal victory in 2013 when a judge struck down key parts of the state's bigamy law, essentially decriminalizing polygamy.

The suit is now before a federal court of appeals.


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