Hunting vote not whipped

By staff

The government will not whip MPs to repeal the ban on hunting.

Despite overturning the Hunting Act being a Tory manifesto commitment, David Cameron is reported to be willing to upset his right wing on the issue to keep his Liberal Democrat coalition partners on board.

The Financial Times reports that the government will allow a free vote on repealing the act, but if, as expected, the majority of MPs vote to keep the hunting with dogs ban in place, it will not take further action.

A Conservative government source told the paper: “This is the reality of being in coalition, you have to keep both sides happy.”

The paper reports that Conservative right-wingers are also set to be disappointed by their own government as it retreats on a commitment to repeal the Human Rights Act, replacing it with a bill of rights, and also because it is expected to raise the rate of capital gains tax for non-business assets form 18% to 40%.

Backbencher John Redwood said that such a measure was “anathema to most Conservatives”.