George Osborne has labelled the defection of Douglas Carswell to Ukip as "regrettable and counter-productive".
Speaking in Brighton today, the Chancellor said that the best way to secure a referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union was to have a Conservative government after the next election.
"That's the choice people are going to face, whether it's at the by-election in Clacton or at the general election next year," Mr Osborne said.
More top news
ITV News understands the remains of 14 of those who died in the Alps mountain air disaster have been returned to
Ed Miliband formally launched Labour's election campaign hours after he and David Cameron submitted themselves to the first TV event.
Investigators believe Andreas Lubitz deliberately killed himself and 149 others. They are now attempting to ascertain why.