Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross faced defeat in the recent Aberdeenshire North and Moray East election, losing to SNP candidate Seamus Logan. This loss marks the end of Mr. Ross’s leadership of the Tory party, as he had previously announced his intention to step down as an MSP if he won the seat. Despite initially planning to resign as an MP in the next general election due to boundary changes, Mr. Ross decided to run for Aberdeenshire North and Moray East, leading to controversy within the party as he was chosen over David Duguid, who had represented much of the area before the boundary changes.

The decision to run in Aberdeenshire North and Moray East led to discontent within the party, with some members feeling that Mr. Ross’s change of heart was not in the best interest of the party. This ultimately led to Mr. Ross deciding to step down as leader following the election. Prior to this election, Mr. Ross had served as an MP for Moray and as a Highlands and Islands MSP, in addition to his role as a professional assistant football referee. However, with his Moray constituency being abolished due to boundary changes, Mr. Ross faced the challenge of running in a new constituency.

The seat that Mr. Ross contested, Aberdeenshire North and Moray East, was previously held by Mr. Duguid, who had represented the Banff and Buchan seat since 2017. Despite claims that Mr. Duguid was seriously ill, he had already been adopted by local party members to run in the election. Mr. Ross, who had been criticized by opponents for holding multiple positions, was the only MSP to also serve as an MP in the current Holyrood session before the UK Parliament dissolved. A source within the Scottish Conservative party revealed that Mr. Ross had come to the realization that continuing to hold both positions would not be supported by the party’s MSPs.

Overall, the defeat of Douglas Ross in the Aberdeenshire North and Moray East election marks the end of his leadership of the Scottish Conservative party. His decision to run in the new constituency despite previous plans to step down as an MP led to controversy within the party, ultimately resulting in his resignation as leader. The outcome of this election highlights the challenges and tensions within the party as they navigate changing constituencies and leadership roles.