Mr Oborne claims that UKIP, according to a poll, are now ahead of the Lib Dems. He states:
"I believe that Ukip is about to take over from the Lib Dems as Britain’s third largest political party".
We suggest that Mr Oborne takes a look at recent by-elections before making such rash statements. It may prevent him from looking more foolish than he already is!
Glasgow City - Hillhead: First count SNP 1026, Lab 945, Green 435, C 372, Lib Dem 307, Ukip 36, Britannica 11. (May 2007 - Four seats first count SNP 1899, Green 1675, Lab 1192, Lib Dem 1184, Lab 1080, C 912, Lib Dem 463, Solidarity 344, Scottish Socialist Party 184, Nine per cent growth party 51. Elected SNP 1, Green 1, Lab 1, Lib Dem 1). SNP hold. Swing 3.4% Lab to SNP.
Isle of Wight Council - West Wight: C 640, Lib Dem 116, Ukip 78. (June 2009 - Ind 719, C 624). C gain from Ind
Ribble Valley Borough - Salthill: C 208, Lib Dem 204, Ukip 158, Lab 40. (May 2011 - Two seats C 323, Lib Dem 266, Ukip 223, C 211, Lib Dem 157, Ind 178, Lab 109, 100). C gain from Lib Dem. Swing 2.4% C to Lib Dem. UKIP vote down by 65 since May 2011.
Warrington Borough - Poulton North: Lib Dem 776, Lab 733, C 147, Ukip 79. (May 2011 - Lab 1442, Lib Dem 1204, C 426; July 28 2011 by-election: Lib Dem 1106, Lab 895, C 190, Ukip 97). Lib Dem hold. Swing 5.1% Lab to Lib Dem. UKIP vote down by 18 since May 2011.
As you can see, the facts are somewhat different! UKIP is still trailing behind the Lib Dems. So much for becoming Britain's third party. And so much for Oborne's claim that:
"The main parties’ cosy alliance is about to be blown apart by Nigel Farage’s Eurosceptics".
It was left to The Independent to provide a more realistic account of UKIP's electoral failure:
"Despite the eurozone's woes there was little sign of a surge by Ukip which fought four of the five contests declared so far". LINK