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Fox predicts hunting change defeat

A substantial number of Conservatives would help defeat attempts to repeal the ban on hunting with dogs, Liam Fox has said.

The Tory former cabinet minister said he would welcome a free vote although predicted there would be enough opposition in the House of Commons to prevent the law being changed.

Prime Minister David Cameron promised to offer MPs a free vote on a Government Bill to repeal the Hunting Act passed by the former Labour administration in 2004 if he won the general election.

The law currently bans t he use of dogs to hunt foxes and other wild mammals in England and Wales.

Opposition from the Liberal Democrats prevented Mr Cameron delivering on a similar pledge made in the Conservative manifesto for the 2010 general election.

Appearing on Murnaghan on Sky News, Mr Fox said: "I would like to see a free vote on it.

"Given the balance of the House of Commons I think you will have pretty much all the opposition parties voting against and a substantial number of Conservatives against it.

"I do not see it happening. But again we gave a commitment we would have a free vote and I think that we should have a free vote."

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