Ruth Davidson is the new leader of the Scottish Conservatives after its members narrowly rejected her main opponent’s plan to disband and start a new right-wing party.
The 32-year-old former BBC journalist edged out Murdo Fraser by only 566 votes in the bad-tempered contest after he argued the Tory brand was too mistrusted north of the Border for the party ever to succeed.
But Miss Davidson, who is openly gay and a kick boxer, said she will unite the deeply-divided party and attract new support from sections of Scottish society that have stopped listening to the Conservatives.
The result marks the culmination of a remarkably rapid political ascent. She joined the party two years ago and only won election as a Glasgow MSP in May after the Tories’ first-choice candidate was forced to stand down over his financial history.
What’s the bet she can say gay marriage unlike Charles Chauvel and Grant Robertson.