Nick Clegg's efforts to rally the Liberal Democrat faithful have been awkwardly undermined as a new poll finds the party has slipped to fourth place.
In a survey carried out by Tory peer Lord Ashcroft, just 7% of voters would vote for the Liberal Democrats, a 1% drop on last month leaving them at level-pegging with the Greens, who rose 3% in the polls.
Lord Ashcroft's latest findings
Meanwhile, the Tories are out in front at 32%, with Labour close behind at 30%. The poll, carried out over the past weekend, suggests that David Cameron's well-received Tory conference speech has seen his party's lead stay firm.
The news has delighted many Green Party supporters, who celebrated the fact that the party was "overtaking" the Lib Dems in the polls.
The Green Party also boasted that 12% of people who voted Lib Dem in 2010 intended to vote Green in May 2015, according to the Independent's "poll of polls".
Natalie Bennett, Green Party Leader, said: “As pollsters and commentators are increasingly recognising, next year's election will be a genuine five-party race.
"As the three business-as-usual parties demonstrate they cannot move on from the failed policies of the past 30 years it is not surprising that support for the Green Party is swelling."