I'll say one thing for UKIP Leader Nigel Farage he has a great sense of humour. This was demonstrated today after UKIP managed second place in two parliamentary by-elections.
Mr Farage announced UKIP as the "third force" in British politics. An amusing claim which just isn't backed by the evidence. Look at how the figures stack up. Of course UKIP has a number of Euro MPs, although according to Channel 4 Political Editor Michael Crick in this piece Mr Farage himself considers them "oddballs and eccentrics, too old, often lazy, sometimes corrupt". UKIP has a handful of councillors across the country, many are defections from other parties. They don't have any MPs. In the second places they achieved this week less than 1% of the electorate in Rotherham voted for them and less than 0.5% of the Middlesborough electorate.
Compare this with the Liberal Democrats. We have 12 hard working MEPs. One of our MEPs here in the South East is Sharon Bowles who is the first woman and first British MEP to chair the powerful Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee of the European Parliament. Sharon was this year named the most influential Briton on EU Policy and recently made it on to the shortlist for Governor of the Bank of England. We have 57 MPs and they have places in Cabinet and at junior ministerial level. We are in government.
The second piece of humour from Mr Farage is that he is believed to be considering Neil and Christine Hamilton as potential UKIP candidates for the European Parliament. Michael Crick in the article referenced above suggests UKIP is looking for people with the right kind of "modern, serious image" to replace some of his current MEPs. Not quite what comes to my mind when thinking of the Hamiltons. Neil lost his seat in what has been dubbed the "cash for questions saga", she went off to parade around the jungle as a "celebrity" and they have both appeared on tv games shows