Nick Clegg today urges Liberal Democrat activists to hold their nerve, insisting he is taking tough decisions in government that will ultimately make Britain a better place. "What we're doing as a party and as a coalition – it's not easy, but it's right," he says in a New Year message to party members.
"We are putting the interests of the country first and we have taken the first steps towards building a fairer, greener and more liberal country."
His words come after a traumatic year for the Liberal Democrats, during which they lost the referendum on the Alternative Vote and saw their poll ratings tumble. A deep Coalition rift also opened when David Cameron became the first British Prime Minister to veto a European Union treaty.
In his message, Mr Clegg says completing an "economic rescue mission" remains the top priority.
He points to moves to lift the low-paid out of income tax, give extra help to children from poorer homes and ensure a "decent" rise in pensions and promises initiatives to create "green" jobs, and encourage growth in the regions.
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