by Mindy Aguon
Guam - Lawmakers reacted to Governor Eddie Calvo's address today, with many saying they appreciate the chief executive's recognition of the need to work with members of the legislature in realizing The Guamanian Dream. Military Buildup chairperson Senator Judi Guthertz (D), who was specifically recognized during the governor's speech, said she was pleased to hear Calvo's stance on Fena and the buildup.
She told KUAM News, "I'm glad that he put the military on notice that this is not really a slam dunk, the buildup. That it must be respectful of the people of Guam and it must contribute to a better quality of life for all the people of Guam. Our military friends and our civilian community. That's been my message for three years. We can make this work if we help each other along the way and we're realistic in our goals."
Republican Minority Leader Senator Frank Blas, Jr. appreciated the governor's candor as well, but made one correction to the speech, noting, "With regards to one claim that was made that our congressional representative had no knowledge and it was through the dead of night that several provisions were put in the NDAA without her knowledge - she knew about it. She failed to tell us about and as a result of her basically sleeping at the wheel we've got a lot of work to do in being able to ensure Congress. First off, we're not second-class citizens."
Another Democrat, Senator Rory Respicio, criticized the governor's speech, saying it was too vague and lacked in detail. Specifically he expressed disappointed that there was no mention of the Guam First Commission, or, "What I was wondering about is why the governor didn't make any mention of the military buildup now and what the recent calamity in Japan will do for that. My thinking is that for the government of Japan to come up with $6 billion at a time when they need that money domestically, I don't know if that's going to change things for them.
"But also I think the government of Japan and the people of Japan who recognize what a wonderful ally the United States has been and will be particularly because President Obama is giving as much aid and support as possible to have that community and government to become stable again so there was no mention of that."