European elections 2014: Party leaders to set out response to Ukip victory

Leaders of the three main parties will attempt to recover from the 'political earthquake' unleashed by Ukip

Party leaders are expected to set out their response to Ukip’s "political earthquake", after its victory in the European elections.

Mr Cameron has called other EU leaders ahead of a meeting in Brussels to stress the need for reform and to urge them to "heed the views expressed at the ballot box" after Ukip stormed to the top with 27.5 per cent of the vote and support surged for other eurosceptic parties.

The Ukip leader Nigel Farage, who almost doubled his tally of MEPs to 24 and has set his sights on Westminster in next year's general election, declaring that his "people's army" was marching on Newark in the hope of overturning a 16,000 Conservative majority in the 4 June by-election in the Nottinghamshire seat.

Ed Miliband will return to the campaign trail in the key target seat of Thurrock, Essex, where his speech will attempt to regain the trust of disgruntled voters in the Labour party and his leadership after a disappointing set of elections.

The Labour leader was facing pressure to switch tactics and offer an in/out referendum on Britain's EU membership in the hope of staunching the flow of votes to Ukip.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has continued to reject demands he resign as the leader of the Liberal Democrats, a position which has been bolstered by potential successor Vince Cable’s insistence that "there is no leadership issue".

His firm stance could prove ineffective however, after more than 340 members signed an e-petition calling on Mr Clegg to stand down. Crucially, they come from 150 different local parties, meaning that if half their parties are persuaded to move against the leader, there will be an election.

John Pugh, Lib Dem MP for Southport, called the Euro results “abysmal” and “worrying”, adding: “To call for business as usual is ludicrous.”

The Conservative former deputy prime minister Lord Heseltine advised Mr Cameron the dramatic surge in support for Ukip was the result of discontent over the economic downturn and would fade.

He insisted that there should be "no pact under any circumstances" with Mr Farage's party.

"It was the place to go to protest about certain things that have been happening which they associate with Europe,” he told BBC2's Newsnight, “but the real problem is the recession. Whenever you get a recession of this sort, mid-term election results find a protest point. It used to be the Lib Dems."

Labour former cabinet ministers Lord Hutton and Alan Milburn wrote to The Times to caution Mr Miliband against "Dutch auction of... ever tighter immigration controls" and instead advised him to "have the courage of his convictions and come out fighting".

Mr Farage has set Ukip’s sights on winning next week’s Newark parliamentary by-election and listed many of the seats the party will target at the general election. They include Thanet South, Folkestone and Hythe, Great Grimsby, Boston, Yarmouth, Portsmouth, Plymouth, Aylesbury, Rotherham, Eastleigh and parts of Cambridgeshire.

READ MORE: FRENCH VF VICTORY BASED ON ANGUISH, RAGE AND DENIAL
CAMERON TO USE UKIP VICTORY AS WARNING FOR BRUSSELS
UKIP SETS TARGET OF 20 SEATS FOR 2015
LABOUR MPS CALL ON MILIBAND TO PROMISE REFERENDUM
CALLS FOR LIB DEM UNITY AFTER CALLS FOR CLEGG TO GO
CONSERVATIVES BID TO WARD OFF UKIP THREAT
UKIP TOP POLL AS EUROPE MOVES TO RIGHT
FAR-RIGHT PARTIES FLOURISH ACROSS EUROPE
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths
Life and Style
life
Sport
Brendan Rodgers
football The Liverpool manager will be the first option after Pep Guardiola
News
Amazon misled consumers about subscription fees, the ASA has ruled
news
Arts and Entertainment
Myanna Buring, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Russell Tovey in 'Banished'
TV Jimmy McGovern tackles 18th-century crime and punishment
Arts and Entertainment
Paul Whitehouse as Herbert
arts + ents
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Lettings and Sales Negotiator - OTE £46,000

£16000 - £46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Worker - Reading and Surrounding Areas

£9 - £13 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a s...

Recruitment Genius: Key Sales Account Manager - OTE £35,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn