The 2015 Conservative manifesto included a commitment to repeal the Hunting Act. It says ‘A Conservative Government will give Parliament the opportunity to repeal the Hunting Act on a free vote, with a government bill in government time.’
The opportunity to fulfil this manifesto pledge came a few weeks ago when a government amendment to the Act was to have been voted on in parliament. If it had been passed it would in effect have allowed a full pack of hounds to be used to flush out foxes to be shot by a gun, whereas the current Hunting Act limits this to two dogs. This would bring the law in England in line with that of Scotland’s. But when the vote came up in Parliament the SNP reneged on their principle not to vote on laws that only affected England and instead declared they would vote with Labour & others against the change.
Despite it being the SNPs fault for this motion failing there was a worrying amount of Conservatives who were not going to back the motion. Conservatives like Dominic Raab, Tracey Crouch and Simon Kirby are stating publicly they will not vote for repeal. This is mostly due to massive lobbying from the League Against Cruel Sports who use sentiment and misleading arguments in support of the ban. Yes, the hunting community may not be good at public relations but the Countryside Alliance is doing a great deal in promoting rural life & highlighting the problems.
Conservative groups like CWF need to start challenging the anti fox hunters or the Act will never be repealed.
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