Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has set the stage for a bitter General Election battle next year, warning that "a lot of mud will be thrown" in the run-up to polling day.
The Liberal Democrat leader urged voters in his New Year message to give his party the chance of a second term in Government, rejecting the politics of "grievance, fear and blame" offered by their rivals.
Clegg said 2015 should be a "year for optimism" but that the two main parties presented the electorate with a "pretty grim choice".
"This year, a lot of mud will be thrown. A lot of over the top claims will be made, a lot of accusations will be hurled around the place. Ignore them," he added.
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