Ukip conference: Nigel Farage is 'weirder than Ed Miliband', poll reveals

But Ukip's Farage is also the party leader most people thought came across as ‘someone like me’

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Indy Politics

People in Britain think Nigel Farage comes across as “weirder” than Ed Miliband, according to a new poll.

When asked which of a list of words or phrases applied to each party leader, 33 per cent of those polled said they found the Ukip leader “weird”, compared to 31 per cent for Labour’s Mr Miliband and just 9 per cent for David Cameron.

The results of the poll came as Mr Farage appeared in a two-minute promotional video for the controversial bookmaker Paddy Power, in which he holds up a pint and declares (with tongue firmly in cheek) that he “loves Europe” ahead of the Ryder Cup.

The news from the poll may come as a relief to Mr Miliband, who has recently admitted he does not excel at photo opportunity politics and repeatedly tried to make light of photographs showing him fail to eat a bacon sandwich.

But while stunts like the Paddy Power advert and his bizarre “Ukip weather forecast” earlier this year may make Mr Farage look weird in the context of political leaders, the latest poll by ComRes and ITV News showed he also scores highest as a politician who “comes across as someone like me”.

Just 24 per cent of people said they thought Mr Farage was “out of touch with ordinary people”-  compared to 52 per cent who felt the same about the Prime Minister.

But Mr Farage’s antics do nothing to make him seem “statesmanlike”, the poll suggests – just 12 per cent of people felt he showed this characteristic, compared to 37 per cent for Mr Cameron.

The poll was conducted with a relatively large group of more than 2,000 people ahead of the Labour conference.

Nigel Farage celebrating the European elections victory


And in other findings, it showed that the economy – which Mr Miliband “forgot” to mention in his keynote speech – is Labour’s weakest issue in the eyes of the public.

Labour nonetheless holds a firm lead over the Conservatives as the party most would trust to manage the NHS, keep down the cost of everyday items, make the welfare system fairer and provide good care for the elderly.

For more of the findings, see the tables below.


Q: Please select which of the following words or phrases apply to each party leader.

StatementDavid CameronEd MilibandNick CleggNigel Farage
Out of touch with ordinary people52%36%46%24%
Has the right policies for Britain’s future26%20%7%25%
Is statesmanlike37%9%6%12%
Comes across as someone like me13%15%8%20%
Can get things done31%17%7%19%
None of the above10%14%20%16%

Base:  All GB adults (n=2,048).

Q: Which party do you trust most to…

IssueLabConLib DemUKIPDon’t know
Manage the NHS29%20%7%9%35%
Keep down the cost of everyday items, such as food, energy and travel28%19%5%9%39%
Make the welfare system fairer28%23%6%11%32%
Improve housing affordability28%18%5%8%41%
Make sure the benefits of economic growth are felt by all26%23%6%11%32%
Provide adequate care for the elderly26%15%10%8%42%
Improve the education system25%24%8%9%35%
Promote economic growth20%34%4%11%31%
Reduce crime and anti-social behaviour17%29%4%14%36%
Redefine Britain’s relationship with the EU15%23%5%30%27%
Reduce the Government’s budget deficit14%39%4%9%33%
Control immigration12%16%4%43%25%

Base: All GB adults (n=2,048).

With Labour’s conference now over, the Ukip party conference begins in Doncaster on Friday.