Prime Minister Theresa May has energized England’s pro-hunting establishment by promising that a free vote in Parliament on England’s Hunting Act will be included in the Conservative Party Manifesto ahead of the general election scheduled for June 8, 2017.
In 2004, the Hunting Act ended the sport of foxhunting as traditionally practiced in England. The Conservatives have promised a free vote on the floor of Parliament before previous elections, but haven’t yet delivered. The expected strength of the Party going into the June election gives greater hope that it will happen this time.
“As it happens, personally, I’ve always been in favour of fox hunting and we maintain our commitment,” said Ms. May. “We had a commitment previously as a Conservative Party to allow a free vote and that would allow Parliament to take a decision on this.”
It was Tony Blair’s Labour government in 2004 that enacted the measure, and Blair has since admitted that it was a mistake which he regretted pushing through.
The usual vocal constituencies have erupted against foxhunting once again, but as Ms. May said, this is an issue “on which individuals will have one view or the other, either pro or against.”
According to The Daily Mirror, Conservative peer Lord Mancroft, chairman of the MFHA and the Council of Hunting Associations, recently suggested, that “a majority of fifty or more would give us a real opportunity for repeal of the Hunting Act. This is by far the best opportunity we have had since the ban, and is probably the best we are likely to get in the foreseeable future.”
There’s the question. Will the anticipated Conservative government, which hasn’t yet even dared to take the issue to the floor of Parliament, gain a sufficient majority in this election to (1) do so, and (2) win repeal of the Hunting Act? For more details, click for the entire BBC article published on May 9, 2017.
Posted May 11, 2017