UKIP leader Nigel Farage is the most popular political leader as well as the only one to have a positive net satisfaction rating, according to a new poll.
In Ipsos MORI’s March Political Monitor, 35% of people surveyed said they were satisfied with Farage’s performance as UKIP leader, with only 26% dissatisfied, giving him a net approval rating of +9. Despite this, nearly four in 10 people (38%) have no opinion on Farage, which is twice the level of other leaders like Labour’s Ed Miliband.
Miliband himself has a net satisfaction rating of -20, with 32% being satisfied and 52% of voters being dissatisfied. Prime Minister David Cameron’s position has got worse, with a net satisfaction rating of -30 (31% satisfied and 61% dissatisfied), a decrease of six points from last month.
Meanwhile, LibDem leader Nick Clegg’s satisfaction rating is the lowest of all leaders at -43 (22% satisfied and 65% dissatisfied), down 10 points since January.
This comes as the political monitor suggests that UKIP has gained in the polls, enjoying a popularity of 13%, higher than the LibDems at 11%. Both of these parties enjoyed a 4-point boost since last month. The Tories are at 27% and Labour at 40%.
Gideon Skinner, head of political research at Ipsos MORI said: “It appears as if Eastleigh has given the Liberal Democrats and UKIP a boost – time will tell how long this lasts. At the same time ratings for all the main party leaders are down, while Nigel Farage receives the highest satisfaction level, but also the highest number of ‘don’t knows’.”
Meanwhile UKIP leader Nigel Farage said: “These latest poll figures make it absolutely clear that UKIP are Britain’s third most popular party. It has become completely normal for us to be ahead of the Liberal Democrats in the polls and is no longer surprising, even among the entrenched political elite, to see results such as these.
“It is nice to have a higher approval rating than the other three party leaders, but I don’t read too much into this. After all it is not difficult to be more likeable than the three stooges in Westminster, as the poll results clearly show! But what is important is the success of the party.
“We continually demonstrate that we represent the previously unheard voice of British politics. For too long the general public have been ignored on important issues, but are finding that there is an alternative party that really represents them.”