A Rick Santorum town hall meeting in New Hampshire turned heated on Thursday when the conservative candidate was asked to explain why he, personally, would be affected if same-sex marriages were legalized, and how his opposition squared with his long riff about the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

The meeting ended with Santorum getting booed by much of the crowd in Concord, which included many college and high-school students, after suggesting that children raised by same-sex parents are being “harmed.”

“How does it affect you personally if two men or two women get married?” Santorum was asked at the College Convention 2012, to broad applause and cheers.

Santorum said that basic rights taken for granted by married people, such as the ability to visit their loved one in the hospital and make medical decisions on their behalf – can also be arranged for same-sex couples. “That can be done legally, through contract.”

The former U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania, who is coming off a surprise near-victory in this week’s Iowa caucuses, then pivoted, and went on to equate same-sex marriages to multiple marriages.