THE Brexit Party further have extended their lead over the mainstream parties ahead of next Thursday’s European election, according to the latest polling figures.
A YouGov poll commissioned by The Times put the Brexit Party on 35 percent – one point up on last week. The same sample also showed second-placed Liberal Democrats overtaking the Labour Party, who now sit on 16 percent and 15 percent respectively. Meanwhile, Theresa May’s Conservatives sit on a paltry 9 percent as they remain behind the Green Party in fifth.
The fieldwork also represented the highest ever polling figures for Mr Farage’s party, who only formed in late January.
When their campaign ahead of the European elections officially launched in April, another poll from YouGov and The Times placed the Brexit Party on 15 percent – behind both Labour and the Conservatives.
But after packing out arenas all over the country for numerous rallies, the seemingly fringe party is now predicted to sweep its MEPs into Brussels.
Mr Farage told supporters in Merthyr, Wales today: “The reason we’ve got division in this country is that many in our establishment, far from respecting the (referendum) vote, have done everything they can in the last two years to overturn the greatest democratic exercise in the history of our nation.
“And it is a total and utter disgrace.”
The polls show that the Brexit Party is primarily picking up its support from former Conservative voters – a Mail on Sunday poll last month showed that 40 percent of Tory councillors now back Mr Farage’s party.
Following a series of controversies and swathes of former support going to the Brexit Party, Ukip currently sit on 3 percent – the lowest of the seven primary contesting parties – after achieving a mammoth 27.5 percent vote share in the 2014 European elections.
It was a mixed performance for the self-proclaimed ‘Remain’ parties – while Vince Cable’s Liberal Democrats notched another point in the polls, the Green Party went down one to 10 percent.
Meanwhile, Change UK – which formed in February out of defectors from the Labour and Conservative Party – remain on 5 percent.
In a simultaneous poll asking participants about a possible general election, 18 percent of respondents chose the Brexit Party, compared to 25 percent for both the Labour and Conservative Party.
The corresponding result would leave the Conservative Party 51 seats short of a majority, while the Brexit party would gain just seven seats under first-past-the-post rules.
The figures will be welcome news for Mr Farage, who came under fire today after Channel 4 News alleged that former Ukip funder Arron Banks – who regularly bankrolled the party – gave £450,000 funding to Mr Farage after he had quit as Ukip leader.
Mr Farage refused to comment on the claims, The Guardian reports, while Mr Banks dismissed them as a “smear”.