Hunting ban delay reduced

 THE HUNTING Bill has generated much media interest on the day it is proposed to go through parliament (September 15).

The Guardian and The Times report the proposed two-year delay was curtailed by the leader of the Commons, Peter Hain, who favoured reducing the delay to 18-months ensuring that this season‘s fox hunting would be the last.

Mr Blair was believed to be sceptical about reducing the delay period, but was convinced when told that the delay would still be in place after the last possible date for the next general election, which would be the summer of 2006, reports The Guardian.

Peter Bradley, a ministerial aide to Alun Michael, will be signing the amendment to the two-year delay to be tabled by Tony Banks MP, one of the most vociferous anti-hunt Labour MPs.

“It will deliver the manifesto pledge that we made,” said Mr Bradley.

“It will allow a reasonable transition period to remove any justification hunt supporters may otherwise claim for the wholesale destruction of packs or taking the kind of action that might hijack the election should it occur next spring,” Mr Bradley told the paper.

The Times reports on the buoyant mood within the Countryside Alliance that according to legal advice they have received the use of the Parliament Act will be unlawful. 

The CA‘s legal team advised them that if the suggested amendment or parallel resolution is used to delay the ban from three months [as set out in the original Bill] to two years and the Parliament Act is then used to force through the law, this would give grounds for a legal challenge.

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