The former Shetland farmer Tavish Scott swept to victory as leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats yesterday, immediately launching a stinging attack on the Nationalist administration at Holyrood.
Mr Scott, who had been the favourite for the top job, won 59 per cent of the vote after a three-way contest. He becomes the party's third leader in Scotland since devolution.
The 42-year-old MSP and party finance spokesman was the only one of the three leadership contenders to rule out coalition talks with Alex Salmond's Scottish Nationalist government.
Yesterday, he attacked the SNP administration as "arrogant, misguided and politically dishonest".
He declared: "Spin is the hallmark of this government but spin has a shelf life."
He dismissed Mr Salmond's attacks on Gordon Brown, insisting: "The truth is they're two of a kind. Faced with a problem, their instincts are the same – Dither and MacDither."
He then called on his party to "move away from the Holyrood bubble".