Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, Willie Rennie MSP said:
“It was a year like no other. The Games, the golf and the big vote. This year Scotland rose to the challenge and we did well. We showed that we are a sporting and welcoming nation. And we showed that democracy matters with the silent majority winning the day. As the late Arthur Montford would often say there was a "stramash" - but Scotland won.
“At the end of the year we have secured a more powerful Parliament that will have the flexibility and agility to reflect the will and desires of the people of Scotland. A Scottish Welfare System, £20 billion of taxes and the first steps to a federal Britain are just some of the great powers we have won. I am relishing the opportunity to use the home rule powers of which for a century my Liberal predecessors could only dream.
“Strong liberal voices have also been essential in so many other areas of our life. We have curbed the massive use of stop and search by our police, they are no longer armed routinely on our streets, thousands of two year old children are receiving nursery education for free, over £800 has been cut from the income tax of workers and our NHS has received a big financial boost. Without the Liberal Democrats in Holyrood and in Westminster this would not have been possible.
“My thoughts over the festive season are with those who work to keep us safe - police, fire, nurses, doctors, soldiers and so many others. But I have a special thought this year for the many thousands who have a mental illness. My plea is for everyone to reach out and offer a hand of friendship at what could be a difficult time in their lives. A small gesture from you might make a big difference to them.
“After this special year enjoy a special Christmas.”