JIM Murphy yesterday pledged that Scottish Labour would fight its most “passionate, energetic campaign” as his party seeks to fight off the SNP in what is the “most important” general election for many years.
The vote on 7 May comes after Labour has seen support in its traditional Scottish heartlands nosedive, with some polls predicting it will lose all but a handful of its MPs north of the Border.
But Mr Murphy said while voters could back other parties to “protest” against the Conservatives, only Labour is “big enough and strong enough” to oust David Cameron from Downing Street.
He conceded that if the opinion polls are replicated on election day it would be “dreadful for Scottish Labour”, but added that voting in a large number of SNP MPs would help the Conservatives “cling on to power”.
Mr Murphy spoke as he launched Labour’s Scottish election campaign by addressing party activists in the Gorbals in Glasgow.
He joined them after visiting a nearby food bank, claiming under the Conservative-led government there had been a massive rise in organisations providing emergency aid.
He said: “We’ve had five years of David Cameron and what’s grown in Scotland over the last five years, is that when Labour was in power there was probably one Trussell Trust foodbank, one too many, but there’s nearly 50 now.
“Tens of thousands of children are now fed by charity. I want to end the need for food banks. I want to end food poverty.
“There’s some great volunteers helping their fellow citizens, and that’s great, that people don’t walk by on the other side, but a government shouldn’t walk by on the other side either.
“We want to have a mansion tax on homes worth over £2 million to help fund the NHS, we want to increase taxes on those earning over £150,000 as well to help fund our public services, and we want a bankers’ bonus tax to guarantee that every young Scot can get a job or training or an apprenticeship.”
SCOTSMAN TABLET AND MOBILE APPS