By Rory Reynolds
The far-right party will use the Westminster election campaign to gain publicity for the next Scottish Parliament election in 2011, where they believe they can win a regional list seat.
Murphy’s East Renfrewshire constituency will be one of the key battlegrounds north of the border, with the BNP even claiming that they could cost Labour enough votes to allow the Tories to take the seat.
The BNP admits they will lose in May, but hope to boost their support and will be fielding candidates against Gordon Brown, Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling as well.
However, Murphy has said he will unite Christian, Muslim and Jewish groups to battle the party, which he described as “abhorrent”.Campaigners have claimed that Scottish BNP leader Gary Raikes is attempting to stir up tensions within the Scottish Secretary multicultural constituency which includes the large Jewish and Muslim communities.
Raikes said: “Jim Murphy is a very important target for us. We’d like to see all Labour politicians lose their seats.
“This is just a step to 2011 when we will be in with a chance of winning a regional list seat.
“The sheep will still vote Labour in this seat, however I do think the Tories are in with a real chance of winning the seat.
“If we can take a thousand or so votes off Murphy and help him lose his seat we will be happy.”
The BNP will be standing for all eight of the regional list constituencies next year, claiming that they had a “good chance” of winning a Central or Glasgow seat.
Jim Murphy, Secretary of State for Scotland, said that anger at politicians over the expenses scandal was “being exploited by people with evil intentions”.
He said: “I didn’t ever think I would have to debate a fascist party, I thought that type of politics was a thing of the past but that poison is back in the form of the BNP.
“They are now planning to stand against me and its time for them to give some answers about their denial of the Holocaust and their hatred of immigrants.
“Their politics are alien to our British way of life – where we try to see people for who they are rather than their skin colour, nationality or religion.
“The BNP’s Nazi salutes and Holocaust denials turn my stomach.”
He added: “We need to rise to this challenge sooner rather than later and we must succeed not for the sake of politicians but for the sake of our country.
“I will consult with churches, Jewish and Muslim groups, about the best way to engage with, and defeat, the abhorrent views of the BNP.”
Aamer Anwar, a human rights lawyer and organiser of Scotland United, who stood against the Scottish Defence League when they attempted to march in Glasgow, said: “This should be of concern because the BNP has repeatedly been exposed as a fascist organisation.
“They have so far failed to get a toehold anywhere in Scotland…but what is of concern is the publicity they will try to gain in these high profile seats.”