Glasgow & West Scotland

Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy 'remains Westminster candidate'

Jim Murphy Image copyright PA
Image caption Jim Murphy replaced Johann Lamont as Scottish Labour leader

Scottish Labour has confirmed that leader Jim Murphy remains the party's candidate in the East Renfrewshire seat in May's General Election.

Mr Murphy, who is not an MSP, has already said he will be his party's candidate for first minister at the Scottish Parliament elections in 2016.

He had faced calls to clarify his position over the Westminster seat, which he has held since 1997.

Mr Murphy was elected leader last month, replacing Johann Lamont.

A spokesman for Mr Murphy told the Press Association: "Jim Murphy is currently the MP for East Renfrewshire and the candidate.

"If that changes his constituents will be the first to be told."

Westminster candidate

Glenn Campbell, political correspondent

Jim Murphy was apparently re-selected as Labour's general election candidate in East Renfrewshire last year.

That was before he was elected leader of the Scottish Labour Party with a commitment to stand for Holyrood in 2016, if not before.

What's happened today is that, in response to media enquiries, Labour has confirmed that Mr Murphy remains a Westminster candidate.

It is not clear whether or not that position will change before the general election on May 7th.

Labour will only say that if it does Mr Murphy will tell his constituents first.

There would be nothing to stop him seeking or holding seats in both parliaments.

Speaking on the BBC's Sunday Politics Scotland programme in December, Mr Murphy said: "I've given a commitment that I'll be in the Scottish Parliament in 2016 and Labour's candidate for first minister in 2016.

"I'd like to be there sooner than that and in terms of how we do that and what we do, of course I'll let my constituents know first and my constituency party know first.

"But there's a cast-iron guarantee to be a candidate in 2016 at those elections, if not before."

Former first minister Alex Salmond previously served as both MSP and MP simultaneously, but Mr Murphy previously said that option was "not something I'm attracted to".

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