Navy Reverses Itself On Gay Marriages On Military Bases

The Navy did an abrupt about-face late Tuesday, suspending earlier guidance that could have allowed same-sex marriages on military bases once the Pentagon scraps its present Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy.

The Navy is changing course on guidance that would have allowed gay marriage on military bases. news, Politics, carbonated.tv, carbonated tv,

Washington (CNN) -- The Navy did an abrupt about-face late Tuesday, suspending earlier guidance that could have allowed same-sex marriages on military bases once the Pentagon scraps its present Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy.

A memorandum from the Chief of Chaplains, Rear Admiral M.L. Tidd, suspended one he issued about a month ago.

"My memorandum of 13 April 2011 is hereby suspended until further notice pending additional legal and policy review and inter-Departmental coordination," Tidd wrote on Tuesday to all Navy chaplains and "religious program specialists."

The green light for gay marriage on military bases prompted a new round of Congressional opposition to ending Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

Before the policy is changed, it must receive a final sign-off from top Pentagon officials that all services have received proper training on the new rules and procedures. And that final approval could be just weeks away.

Some critics of the Navy's now stalled gay marriage plan have said it would violate federal law under the Defense of Marriage Act.

Navy plan to allow same-sex marriage on bases draws opposition

CNN confirmed the new memo with a Navy spokeswoman, who said the Navy will continue its overall training on how to comply with the repeal of the policy that now bans gays and lesbians from serving openly in the U.S. military.

"The training continues as planned," Lt. Alana Garas told CNN.

"Legal counsel determined that a more thorough review was required," he said on the issues of same-sex marriages, use of military facilities and the participation of Navy chaplains.

It remains unclear what same-sex policies the other services might be considering or adopt.

In his April memo, Rear Admiral Tidd said that in states that allowed same-sex marriage or civil unions, "base facilities may normally be used to celebrate the marriage."

Tidd had earlier said the chaplains' participation in a same-sex ceremony would depend on whether it was "consistent with the tenets of his or her religious organization."

CNN