The 2011 Scottish Liberal Democrats leadership election was triggered by the resignation of party leader Tavish Scott on 7 May 2011, due to the very poor showing of the party at the 2011 Scottish parliament election, in which the Liberal Democrats only returned 5 MSPs and lost 12.
2011 Scottish Liberal Democrats leadership election
Nominations for party leader closed on 17 May 2011, and with Willie Rennie the only declared candidate, he was elected to the position unopposed.
There were only four other Scottish Liberal Democrat MSPs currently sitting in the Scottish Parliament: Jim Hume, Liam McArthur and Alison McInnes and Tavish Scott, the former party leader. Although Liam McArthur was mentioned as a possible contender, most media believed that it was unlikely that another candidate would stand due to the small size of the party making a leadership contest and ballot undesirable, as turned out to be the case.