Ukip as much chance of winning European elections as finding alien life on Mars, say British public

 

Despite Nigel Farage's prediction that the UK Independence party will cause an “earthquake” in British politics at the European Parliament elections, Britons give Ukip as much chance of winning as finding life on Mars.

Ipsos MORI’s research reveals what the British public think is likely to happen in 2014  compared with the odds offered by Ladbrokes. Only three in ten think it is likely that they will be the largest party, the same as think the NASA Mars Rover will find evidence of life on Mars, according to the pollsters' representative sample of 954 adults. The research company note that the odds from Ladbrokes suggest people are way out on UKIP’s chances as despite this, Ukip are still the most popular bet by far to win the European elections.

According to Ladbrokes, 56 per cent of punters are putting their pounds on the party's success.

Earlier in January, a YouGov poll showed Labour were in first place and the Tories in third. However YouGov noted at the time that this didn’t mean Ukip wouldn’t win the European Elections, writing:  “In past euro-elections, Ukip’s support has increased as the election approaches. If this pattern is repeated, Ukip is likely to overtake Labour by polling day.”

Bobby Duffy, Managing Director of Ipsos MORI Social Research Institute said: “Predictions are very tricky – as we’ve seen recently, economists and government struggle with forecasting how the economy will do, and are often surprised by better or worse figures than expected.  It’s therefore a bit tough to expect the public to have a clearer picture of the future on these sorts of issues – the “wisdom of crowds” clearly has limits.”

“But it also suggests big gaps in knowledge of some key issues... the lack of awareness of how possible UKIP being the largest party at the European elections is important, as it will be a greater surprise to people if it does happen.” 

Nigel Farage disowned his entire 2010 election manifesto last week, saying it was “drivel” and that Ukip would release new ones after the Europeans Elections. He described David Campbell Bannerman, the man who wrote the policy discussion papers as an “idiot”. Mr Bannerman, who has since defected to the Conservative Party to be a Tory MEP for Cambridge told the  BBC Radio 4’s The World Tonight: “It was a very serious paper but Nigel could not be bothered to read it, anything to do with policy and I’m afraid it’s not good enough for someone who’s trying to be or claims to be a serious political leader.

“It’s not a political party, it’s a pressure group. Because Nigel’s on the ropes, he’s lashing out in all directions.”

Mr Farage dismisses these claims, instead writing in The Independent: "Incidentally, the most contested seat in the eastern region is currently between these two candidates. I know who I think will make the better MEP."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
Phillips Idowu, Stella McCartney and Jessica Ennis
fashionMcCartney to continue designing Team GB Olympics kit until 2016
Sport
Shinji Kagawa and Reece James celebrate after the latter scores in Manchester United's 7-0 victory over LA Galaxy
football
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
Farah returns to the track with something to prove
Commonwealth games
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

Commonwealth Games 2014

Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism