|The candidates for London Mayoral election|
When the BBC's Question Time ran an edition with the Leader of the British National Party, Nick Griffin, on the panel. Labour's Jack Straw, Conservative Sayeeda Warsi and Liberal Democrat Chris Huhne all took Mr Griffin on and the BNP collapsed in the polls and the party got thrashed at the subsequent general election. Therefore the candidates would be better taking on the BNP as it seems they're simply running away from the debate.
The Liberal Democrat candidate, Brian Paddick wont be taking part due to being unable to "have a serious debate without Ken Livingstone". And Conservative Boris Johnson's team say they were offered a four way debate but hadn't agreed to take part, a spokesman for Boris Johnson said "Boris would not share a stage with the BNP."
Despite those withdrawals, a spokeswoman for UK Independence Party candidate Lawrence Webb said he was still planning to take part. "We are going to take every opportunity to talk to Londoners, particularly as we are fourth in the polls but are being treated as an also-ran." She said it was "pathetic" to pull out of the debate over the BNP adding: "Are there any toys left in their pram?"
The Independent candidate Siobhan Benita has said on the issue: "I want to debate with ALL the candidates. This radio debate was the only BBC mayoral debate where I was getting the chance to go head to head with Boris and Ken so it's particularly disappointing for me. I'm currently barred from debating with the other candidates on the BBC TV debate on Sunday night and I have no voice at all on the ITV debate next week. I've heard nothing from the BBC about whether the debate is still going ahead. The other candidates don't seem to understand that appearing on a platform with the BNP doesn't mean you support them. I'm not in favour of the BNP. I'm in favour of democracy. I say to the other candidates: let's do this debate and let the public make up their own mind".
A spokesman for the BBC said it wanted to hear from all the candidates in a single studio debate, but that was "a big logistical challenge" and "might not be possible".he said "It is up to individuals to decide whether to take part".
The BNP campaign refuse to speak to bloggers and freelance journalists therefore were unavailable for a comment.