UKIP were “stunned” by the success of their strategy to target traditionally working class seats, and “can’t believe Labour didn’t see it coming”. A senior UKIP source has told Breitbart London that 18 months ago the party changed the focus of their campaign to appeal to disaffected Labour voters.
The comments came in the early hours of a night that left mainstream parties reeling from a UKIP surge in areas of Northern England. Pundits had predicted major UKIP gains in the European elections but believed that the party would remain fairly stagnant in the local elections.
This was because most of the seats being contested were in areas that UKIP have traditionally either polled badly, or not even bothered running at all. The election also followed on from the County Council elections last year, in which UKIP challenged the Conservatives but gained little traction against Labour.
In ultra-safe Labour Rotherham UKIP gained 10 seats, even though only one third of seats were being contesting. UKIP also beat both the leader and deputy leader of the Council, showing that they are strong enough to beat skilled and popular local leaders.
There were also gains in Hull and Doncaster, also widely believed to be no go areas for anyone other than Labour.
Breitbart London understands that UKIP accepted 18 months ago that they had run out of Conservative defectors and believed their message would resonate with working class voters who had been let down by a very liberal Labour Party.
A UKIP spokesman told Breitbart London: “Last year we were attacked for being anti-tory, but that was only because we were running in the Home Counties and that is the Tory heartland. At the time we told the media that we had much more support but they didn’t believe us. Tonight we’ve been proved right.
“We knew we would take seats in the Northern Labour heartlands but we are stunned by how well it has gone. We can’t believe Labour didn’t see it coming, they are so complacent. We promised you an earthquake, here it is.”
For many years voters in Northern England have complained about poor leadership in Labour Councils but were unwilling to shift to the Conservatives. These results appear to show that UKIP are able to challenge Labour from the right without having a toxic brand that has made it almost impossible for the Conservatives to gain traction.
The results are a major blow to Ed Miliband as they hold Northern areas because the Conservatives could never get enough seats to win, but these results suggest that UKIP might.