Hunting for support
Thursday, 3 March 2011
Countryside Alliance Chief Executive Alice Barnard writes: Any supporter of hunting must have found it hard to suppress a wry grin if hearing DEFRA Minister James Paice MP’s razor sharp comment to his opposite number, Joan Ruddock MP, during a Parliamentary debate on forestry this week. “The right hon. Lady referred to the 0.5 million people who expressed concern about this matter. I cannot help but observe that she took a lot less notice of the 0.5 million people who opposed a ban on fox hunting and whom she treated with disdain."
The feisty Minister’s point joins the Prime Minister’s recent declaration that “Everyone knows the Hunting Act isn’t working” to illustrate significant on-record support for hunting from Members of Parliament. This is in stark contrast to our opponents, who seem to have resorted to making up allegations against hunts to try to prop up the failed Act.
Our campaign to see the Hunting Act repealed is clearly gathering momentum, but no one is complacent and no one can afford to sit back. Many of you have already lobbied your MP on the issue, and we have received much positive feedback from supportive MPs who agree with us that the issue must not be allowed to slip from the agenda. The lobbying operation has also been worthwhile in that it has flushed out undecided MPs who have contacted us to find out more about the debate. Our political team is busy briefing these MPs with the aim of securing as much support as can be mustered. The current situation means that no one can be certain what would happen were there to be a vote to repeal the Hunting Act tomorrow. We might easily win it, but we must be sure. This issue will not go away and we are confident repeal will be achieved when the time is right. However, we must all ensure enough busy MPs are on the premises and go through the lobby on the day, on the dot.
The case for repeal stands and none of us can waste an opportunity to make sure it is energetically reiterated. You can lobby your MP in only a few clicks here if you have not yet done so. Our political team would be grateful for any MP feedback – please email@example.com