De konservative har lidd et ydmykende nederlag ved suppleringsvalget i Eeastleigh. De liberale beholdt plassen, men UKIP slo de konservative og ble nummer to.
UKIP fikk 4 prosent ved siste parlamentsvalg. Nå fikk det 27.8 %, det er en fenomental vekst.
Ukip came second in Eastleigh as the Liberal Democrats hung onto the seat despite recent allegations of a sex scandal involving a senior party figure.
Being defeated by both their coalition partners and Ukip will add to the growing doubts that the Conservatives can win the next general election.
Eastleigh is one of the Conservatives’ target seats and the party has flooded the seat with MPs over the last weeks, hoping to seize a constituency won by the Lib Dems in 2010.
But the final results, announced after 2am this morning, showed that the Lib Dems had held on and that Ukip had inflicted a huge symbolic blow to the Conservatives.
Mike Thornton took 13,342 votes for the Lib Dems, 32 per cent of the total.
Diane James of Ukip took 11,571 votes, or 27.8 per cent.
Maria Hutchings, the Conservative candidate got 10,559 votes, or 25.4 per cent.
Labour’s John O’Farrell came a distant fourth with 4,088 votes, unchanged from the last general election.
Ukip saw a remarkable rise in support over just a few weeks of campaigning in Eastleigh. It only got four per cent of the Eastleigh vote at the last general election.
Cameron reagerte på resultatet med å si at han ikke kom til å legge kursen mer mot høyre for å stanse lekkasjen til UKIP.
Despite admitting that the by-election result was “disappointing” the Prime Minister said he would reject calls by some backbenchers to lurch further to the right.
He said the Tories will not be blown off course by the defeat in Eastleigh and called on the party to “remain true to our principles”.
Men Cameron har et troverdighetsproblem. Flere backbenchere mener at han er for urban og liberal og svikter arbeiderne som stemte på Thatcher. Gjennomgående mener de han ikke lytter til grasrota.
“He is out of touch with the party. Both gay marriage and EU migration feed into a narrative that too much emphasis is going to the liberal metropolitan elite and not enough to the blue-collar working vote that Margaret Thatcher had the support of.”
Mrs Laing told BBC Radio 4’s The World At One programme: «Ordinary Conservative voters don’t feel that this Government is in tune with them, with their hopes and fears.
«Sometimes, you know, I will put it as strongly as saying that it’s hurtful. It’s hurtful to people who want to believe in a Conservative Party that represents them.
«In my own constituency, on the doorsteps in Eastleigh, and generally people that I talk to, do you know what, they actually feel hurt.
«They feel hurt and they feel left out. They’re told that they’re old-fashioned and they think that they don’t matter and that what they stand for, and what they believe in, doesn’t matter. Those people who for decades have put their faith in the Conservative Party.
«The only way to take forward those issues that people really care about is to have a truly Conservative government. And to do that the leadership of my party has to tune in better to the people who want to support it – who want loyalty and who now feel rather left out.»