The author paints a picture of Portugal as "a socially conservative country with traditional Catholic values". This may be somewhat the case, but I have also found Portugal and also Spain to be very forward thinking and open minded, that is, not very conservative. (and I think the news itself sort of supports this...)
Just my theory, but I would chalk the open mindedness up to a large portion of the popluation who lived under a fascist regime (Franco in Spain and Salazar in Portugal) which ended only recently (75 and 68, respectively)).
If there are any Iberians in the room, I would love to hear some opinions... (and please tell me if i'm putting my foot in my mouth)