Portugal's President Anibal Cavaco
Silva has said he forwarded a gay marriage bill to the nation's
Constitutional Court because he has “doubts” about its
constitutionality, Portugal's Jornal de Noticias reported.
Speaking to reporters Friday, Cavaco
Silva said he forwarded four out of five of the bill's articles to
the Constitutional Court because “he had doubts about its
But he did not respond when asked why
he did not include Article 3, which would ban adoption by married
Parliament, led by Prime Minister Jose Socrates, approved on February
11 the bill that gives gay and lesbian couples the right to marry but
prohibits adoption. The court has 25 days to rule on the matter.
The president, who opposes the
legislation, had the option of signing the bill, vetoing it or
forwarding it for review by the Constitutional Court. He forwarded
the bill on March 13, according to an official statement.
While proponents have expressed
confidence that the bill is constitutional, others point to a narrow
2009 high court ruling that denied a lesbian couple the right to
marry, despite a provision in the constitution that bans
discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.