Nigel Farage is invited on to live TV debates as UKIP plans to get 25 seats in the general election

UKIP is planning to win 25 seats at the general election next year, and could even take over from the Lib Dems as the UK’s third party.

After winning the Clacton by-election and gaining its first MP, UKIP has more than doubled the number of seats it is attempting to get. Analysis leaked to a Sunday newspaper showed the party anticipating getting 25 seats, up from the previous target of 12.

Polls show UKIP is gaining support and could become the third most popular party.

TV debates

Meanwhile, the line up for the general election TV debates has been announced and UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been invited to share the stage with David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband.

There will be three debates, one with Cameron and Miliband, another including Clegg and a third with all four party leaders.

However, the debates are proving controversial as Green Party leader Natalie Bennett has not been invited, despite the party having had an MP since 2010 and as being as popular as the Lib Dems in polls.

Bennett said: “With these statements the broadcasters are demonstrating just how out of touch they are with the public mood, and how ridiculously they cling to the idea that the future of politics looks like the past.

“It is clear from votes and polls that the public are fed up with the three business-as-usual parties and are looking around for alternatives.”

The Scottish National Party also complained as, despite being active only in Scotland, it is now the UK’s third largest party.

Deputy SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: “Dear broadcasters - what about UK’s third biggest political party the @snp?”

Who do you think should take part in the debates? Let us know on Facebook or in the comments below.

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Scots Nats have no reason to be included, as their remit only covers Scotland. The Greens may have an MP but it has very little support as a party. At 6% treachery Clegg is widely regarded as an irrelevance. The three main parties are Con/Lab/UKIP- forget the others

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