After 'My Husband's Lover' measure, same-sex marriage bill?

MANILA, Philippines – A member of Congress warned on Monday, August 12, that passing a law that will penalize same-sex adultery would set a dangerous precedent.

If enacted, the so-called “My Husband's Lover” bill, filed by Albay Rep Edcel Greco Lagman, will pave the way for recognizing homosexual relationships and eventually allowing same-sex marriage, another lawmaker warned.

“This will create a very dangerous precedent…. There is a condition precedent to this bill that same sex relationship is not accepted although it exists in our society,” Citizens Battle Against Corruption (Cibac) Rep Sherwin Tugna said.

Tugna, who is also Senior Deputy Majority Leader, said that although “the bill is innovative and out-of-the box…it will have a hard time in the plenary.”

Lagman’s House Bill 2352 – named after the top-rating GMA Network drama series about a husband having a homosexual affair – seeks to broaden the definition of adultery under the Revised Penal Code.

It seeks to amend the law to include penalties on married men and women who engage in sexual activities with members of the same sex.

House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr expressed support for Lagman’s bill, saying it will provide not only equal rights but "equal responsibilities" as well to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community.

"Let’s see [its chances]. A similar bill was filed in the QC (Quezon City) Council. I want to see how it fares there," Belmonte, a former mayor of Quezon City, said.

Clara Rita Padilla, executive director of EnGendeRights, had a more revolutionary proposal, however: “do away with any kind of penal provision on adultery whether heterosexual or same sex.”

She said “a divorce law in this Congress and at some point a marriage equality law,” should be passed instead.

Divorce bills filed in the 15th Congress did not get past the committee level. –