After overtaking Ukip in membership stakes, the Greens are now snapping at its heels in the polls. According to Lord Ashcroft's latest poll, 11 per cent are now intending to vote Green — up from eight per cent last week. As the chart above shows, this puts them four points behind Ukip.
The party has come a long way since the last election, where they gained just 0.9 per cent of the vote. As Natalie Bennett acknowledged this morning, the Green Party is getting more help from David Cameron than it ever imagined. The natural assumption is that the Green vote is primarily coming from Labour — but its vote has remained steady from last week's poll. The Tories' lead, six points ahead of Labour last week, appears to have been an outlier. This week, the Conservatives are back to a one point lead. Thanks to this drop, the combined share of the two main parties is down to 57 per cent.
And while excitement about the election is building in Westminster, the public have yet to become engaged. According to this poll, 64 per cent are paying little or no attention to the campaigns.
Through his focus groups, Ashcroft has also found out what the public thinks each leader might be if they were an animal. David Cameron would apparently be a fox or 'a giraffe, looking down on everybody'. Nigel Farage is seen as a peacock or a weasel. Nick Clegg would be a 'chihuahua in David Cameron’s handbag' while Ed Miliband would be 'one of those animals that, when you go to the zoo, you’re not bothered whether you see it or not.' Ouch!
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