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Monday 2 October 2023 Dublin: 11°C
Oireachtas TV David Norris speaking in the Seanad today
# Same-Sex Marriage
David Norris: I am not in favour of incest, I never have been
The independent senator has sought to clarify remarks he made in the Seanad on Tuesday.

DAVID NORRIS HAS moved to clarify remarks he made in the Seanad on Tuesday night when he said that gay cousins should be allowed to marry.

Norris had said that regulations covering cousins marrying each other were introduced to protect the genetic pool but that this “will remain relatively untroubled by same-sex marriage”.

It wouldn’t take a feather out of me if two cousin married each other, what’s the problem with that. Really?

The long-time independent senator predicted that he was sure to be “pilloried” by the “grotesque Irish media”.

Speaking today, as the upper house prepares to pass the final stages of the Marriage Bill, which gives effect to May’s historic referendum result, Norris said he had been “deluged” by media requests since he made the remarks.


However, he said the media was “blissfully unaware” that cousins are already allowed to marry each other.

“I wasn’t proposing incest or anything like this, but this was the big deal that was made of this,” he said. 

It’s a fairly remote situation, but I just want to put it on the record that when I was speaking I was not promoting incest, I was just saying it wouldn’t cost me a bother if cousins married.

Norris acknowledged that cousins marrying each other is “generally not terribly popular but it is legal”.

Oireachtas TV /

He said he was not going on any media outlet to talk further about his remarks, saying cousins will be able to marry each other and have been able to for decades.

“So I think the media should just grow up, get a bit of sense and stop stirring up mare’s nests all over the place,” he said.

I am not in favour of incest, I never have been.

Read: David Norris says that gay cousins should be allowed to marry each other

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