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With UKIP recording their highest standing that Ipsos MORI has ever seen in our Political Monitor this week, and ahead of Prime Minister, David Cameron’s greatly anticipated and then postponed speech on Europe, it is a pertinent time to take a deeper look at UKIP voters. We have looked at our aggregate data from 2012 (combining all our polls from 2012) to build big enough base sizes to try to answer some questions about UKIP voters: who are they, where have they come from and what do they care about?
Following UKIP coming second in the Rotherham by-election last year, Nigel Farage, the party’s leader took the opportunity to claim “We're not just a protest collection of Tories from the shires.” Is he right?
Looking across everyone in 2012 who told Ipsos MORI they would vote for UKIP at an immediate general election, 43% of them had voted for the Conservatives in 2010. Therefore almost half of the support for UKIP is coming from former Conservative voters (note of course , this does not mean half of 2010 Conservative voters are switching to UKIP as we discuss later). Around a quarter are loyal UKIP supporters having voted for them in 2010. The rest is made up of handfuls of Liberal Democrats, Labour and BNP voters as well as people who did not vote in 2010.