Tory, Lib Dem leaders to defend coalition

May 8, 2012 at 1:44 AM
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LONDON, May 8 (UPI) -- British Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, under pressure from their own parties, plan a push-back Tuesday.

The Conservative Cameron and Liberal Democrat Clegg will appear together in Essex on the second anniversary of the formation of the coalition government, to deliver speeches on the economy, The Guardian reported. They will provide a preview of the Queen's Speech Wednesday that will outline the coalition government's plans for the coming year.

Both parties fared badly in last week's local council elections, while Labor picked up about 800 seats. The coalition's fractures have become more pronounced, although Clegg and Cameron remain apparently united.

Simon Hughes, the deputy Lib Dem leader, said Monday some Conservatives apparently think they are "born to rule." He was responding to an "alternative queen's speech" put together by 20 Conservative members of Parliament that included calls for tougher immigration laws, cutting income taxes and giving up one of the Lib Dems' top causes, an elected House of Lords.

Hughes suggested Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne's cut in the tax rate paid by those with the highest incomes was to blame for the coalition's poor showing.

Cameron and Clegg have been resisting calls for turns right or left. Instead, they are expected to defend budget cuts while placing a greater emphasis on growth.

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