Guam Is ThisClose To Having Marriage Equality

Guam Is ThisClose To Having Marriage Equality

Guam looks like it wants to be the next Alabama.

Guam was set to become the first U.S. territory to make same-sex legal until the governor and lieutenant governor decided to gum up the works.

Two days after a lesbian couple were denied a marriage license, Loretta Pangelinan and Kathleen Aguero sued in federal court.

The federal courts fall under the jurisdiction of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled last October that Idaho and Nevada’s bans on same-sex marriage were unconstitutional.

That ruling becomes precedent for the other states and territories under the 9th’s jurisdiction.

That being the case, Guam Attorney General Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson issued a statement saying that “in accordance with the Ninth Circuit’s holding, and pending further ruling from the Supreme Court, the Department [of Public Health and Social Services] is herein advised to immediately begin processing of same gender marriage applications, and to review such applications in the normal course of business.”

This is where the governor and sidekick enter the fray:

Gov. Eddie Calvo and Lt. Gov. Ray Tenorio issued a statement on the gay marriage issue. Although they respect the opinion of Attorney General Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson that Guam should allow same-sex marriage immediately, the administration is deferring a decision, according to the statement.

“If it is the will of the people of Guam to make same-sex marriage legal on Guam, then the Guam Legislature, the people of Guam’s representatives, can take action to change the law, or a referendum can be held giving the people of Guam a direct voice in this issue,” the statement read in part.

The administration’s legal team is reviewing the matter, according to the written statement.

There are five US territories: Guam, American Samoa, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands and the Northern Mariana Islands.