By politics.co.uk staff
The relationship between the prime minister and Nick Clegg faced further difficulty this morning after reports emerged of some bruising jokes at the Liberal Democrat Christmas party.
Appearing at a nightclub in London on the same day he was absent for David Cameron's statement to the Commons on his use of the EU veto, Mr Clegg mocked the prime minister's efforts in Brussels.
"It is very unfamiliar for me. I don't go out clubbing very much," He said.
"It feels somewhat uncomfortable – somewhat like David Cameron at a Franco-German summit."
According to reports in the Daily Mirror, Mr Clegg then took on the thorny issue of Cabinet colleague and former leadership contender Chris Huhne's driving record, which is currently the subject of a police investigation following allegations he convinced his ex-wife to take penalty points for him.
"I want to be in the fast lane as long as Chris Huhne isn't driving," Mr Clegg said.
The next morning, Mr Huhne was said to have interrupted Mr Cameron twice while he summarised events in Brussels around the Cabinet table. The unwritten rules of Cabinet say the prime minister should not interrupted when he is talking.
According to some reports, the energy secretary then criticised the prime minister for not calling him during the negotiations, a comment which was not interpreted as supportive by the Lib Dem leadership.
"It has been an extraordinary year. Not quite as extraordinary as the splits in the Conservative party," Mr Clegg continued.
"We have had Ken Clarke against Theresa May, Ken Clarke against the hang 'em and flog'em brigade, Ken Clarke against the eurosceptics. We have had Ken Clarke against the Conservative party."
Tim Farron, who won plaudits during this year's Liberal Democrat conference for his humorous speeches, then jokingly encouraged party members to get drunk before campaigning for the Conservatives in the upcoming Heston and Feltham by-election.
"There will be coaches outside," he said.
"You won't be allowed on unless you are paralytic. We are going to canvass for the Tories."