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  1. Next: Selection of the Parliament’s nominee for first minister

Live Reporting

By Craig Hutchison

All times stated are UK

Scotland's new first minister, Nicola Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon
Scotland's new first minister, Nicola Sturgeon

Common ground

Nicola Sturgeon poses for pictures with Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick
New First Minister Nicola Sturgeon poses for pictures with Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick

Ms Sturgeon says she wants to find common ground amongst MSPs from other parties as often of possible.

She says she wants to lead "a government with purpose", adding she will be "inspired every day by the potential of this country".

That's it for a historic day at Holyrood

So, the end of a historic day and Scotland has a new first minister, Nicola Sturgeon.

Congratulations to Ms Sturgeon and her family from all at

BBC Scotland's Democracy Live.

Nicola Sturgeon

We will of course be back tomorrow morning for yet another historic day, Nicola Sturgeon's first outing in the hot seat during first minister's questions, as the star not the understudy.

Remember you can watch the entire nomination process and all the speeches on demand at

BBC Scotland's Democracy Live, many thanks to our colleagues at BBC Scotland online.

'Hint for a cabinet reshuffle?

Tom Freeman, Education Correspondent at Holyrood Magazine

tweets: Sturgeon says she will lead by example on gender equality. Hint for cabinet reshuffle? #sp4

On twitter

Mark Ian Harrop: Wonder how #NicolaSturgeon feels that she is the second female leader of a UK nation - the other being Maggie Thatcher. #Scotland #Politics

Yasmin Hodge: Huge congratulations to our new first minister. Not usually into politics but proud tht an ayrshire woman has made her dream ☺️.

Paul Lamb: Nicola Sturgeon delighted with the news she has been included in Gordon Strachan's squad.

Ewan McIntosh: I am OVER THE MOON that we have our first female First Minister in @nicolasturgeon. I can feel new hope for my two girls in this country.

End to inequality

Nicola Sturgeon's niece
Nicola Sturgeon's niece sits in the public gallery along with other family members

Ms Sturgeon highlights her eight-year-old niece in the public gallery, and hopes that by the time she is a young woman she will not have to worry about to gender inequality in Scotland.

Message to women

Ms Sturgeon says she hopes her election will open a "gate of opportunity" for all girls and women in Scotland.

Former first minister

Alex Salmond
Alex Salmond MSP, sits in a new part of the chamber to hear Ms Sturgeon

The camera operators in the Scottish Parliament occasionally focus on Alex Salmond.

Ms Sturgeon pays tribute to her predecessor as First Minister. Penny for his thoughts?

On twitter

Mark McFadden: So far Scotland's football team is undefeated under @NicolaSturgeon's government. #Sturgeon #Scotland #SFA

billythekid: Ruth Davidson stood against Nicola Sturgeon for election as first minister. Gotta admire her optimism…

Josh Currie: This is her "oscar winning" speech. #NicolaSturgeon #FirstMinister.

Tracey S. Rosenberg: Nicola Sturgeon just thanked her parliamentary staff. Classy.

Family thanked

Nicola Sturgeon is now speaking for the first time as First Minister (designate).

She said that regardless of the politics or the point of view of voters, she will seek to represent to everyone.

Ms Sturgeon also pays tribute to her family, many of whom are watching from the public gallery.

On twitter

Emma Quigley: Two out of three speakers got it right #FirstMinister.

Michael Heron: Sad indeed to see Alex Salmond gone, but great to see him succeeded by Nicola Sturgeon. I expect her to be an exceptional #FirstMinister.

TheQueenofGlasgow: Nicola Sturgeon also has amazing shoes #teamnicola.

Josh Currie: This is like watching the Comedy Central Roast of Nicola Sturgeon. #NicolaSturgeon #FirstMinister.

Clarify issues

Mr Harvie hopes Nicola Sturgeon and the Scottish Government will clarify its position on unconventional gas developments.

He said ministers will have to make a decision soon on the issue, and has called on the Scottish Government to say no.

Campaign backer

Patrick Harvie
Patrick Harvie is the leader of the Scottish Green Party

Patrick Harvie of the Scottish Greens adds his own congratulations to Nicola Sturgeon.

Mr Harvie said he enjoyed working with Ms Sturgeon during the independence referendum, when both campaigned for a Yes vote.

Watching in school

Students at St Paul's Academy in Dundee crowd around the TV to see Nicola Sturgeon's election in Modern Studies class.

Mod Studs@St Paul's

tweets: Watching speeches after first minister vote!

Watching in school
Mod Studs@St Paul's

Labour's Neil Finday: 'Congratulations'

Labour MSP and leadership candidate Neil Findlay

tweets: Congratulations to Nicola Sturgeon on becoming First Minister - a proud moment for her family.

Move on

Mr Rennie calls on Ms Sturgeon to move on from the independence referendum result, following three years of work by the SNP to achieve a Yes vote.

He calls for Ms Sturgeon to run the country for the next 18 months.


Women leaders

Willie Rennie quotes extensively from a

BBC website piece on the world's women leaders.....

Day for equality

Willie Rennie
Willie Rennie makes the Lib Dem congratulatory message

Willie Rennie, leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, describes the election of Nicola Sturgeon of a "wonderful day for equality".

Politics of division

Ms Davidson hopes the election of Nicola Sturgeon will mean "the end of the politics of division".

Woman leader

Margaret Thatcher
Ms Davidons makes clear that the first woman leader in the UK was Margaret Thatcher

Ms Davidson highlights that Margaret Thatcher was the first female leader of the UK, which is accompanied by sounds of disapproval from many other MSPs.

No recount

Ruth Davidson is now on her feet, and jokes that she won't ask for a recount of the votes.

On twitter

Ewan McIntosh: Excited today to see @NicolaSturgeon become Scotland's first female First Minister. Hope over Fear personified. #teamnicola

Angus Millar: @NicolaSturgeon's progressive and sensible politics brought me to @theSNP and to Yes. Proud to have her as our First Minister. #TeamNicola

Rick Kelsey: Nicola sturgeons #SNP coronation is taking a while isn't it. I'm surprised there's not been a bank holiday. #Sturgeon

Matthew Millgton: It seems that to be the Scottish First Minister, the main requirement is that you surname sounds like a fish. #salmond #sturgeon

Looking forward

Ms Baillie wonders if Ms Sturgeon will have a "different tone and style" from Alex Salmond, and says she is looking forward to tomorrow's First Minister's Questions.

Election commitments

Ms Baillie says that it appears the SNP are on hold until they make commitments for the 2016 election.

Government plan

Ms Baillie said she awaits Ms Sturgeon's government programme on achieving social justice.

Labour congratulations

Jackie Baillie
Jackie Baillie is the Scottish Labour spokeswoman in the absence of a leader

Jackie Baillie, the spokesperson for Scottish Labour following the resignation of Johann Lamont, congratulates Nicola Sturgeon on becoming Scotland's new First Minister and Scotland's first female First Minister.

On twitter

Drew McGowan: The 'Glass Ceiling' has just been smashed: Nicola Sturgeon - a working class lassie fae Ayrshire - is now the First Minister of Scotland!

Eilidh: Nicola Sturgeon new First Minister. Because no-one saw that coming.

Abbie Cassidy: Just had a small feminist moment thanks to Nicola Sturgeon.

Tom: Would be hilarious if Her Maj rejected Sturgeon as the parliament's nominee #UnionistQueeny.

Queen informed

The Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick congratulates Nicola Sturgeon, and said she will now recommend Ms Sturgeon as First Minister to her Majesty The Queen.

Sturgeon elected

Nicola Sturgeon being hugged
A congratulatory hug comes from fellow woman MSP and Cabinet minister Shona Robison

BreakingBreaking News

In the election, Nicola Sturgeon received 66 votes. Ruth Davidson received 15 votes, and there were 39 abstentions.

SNP support

MSP for Almond Valley Angela Constance

tweets: Looking forward to seeing @NicolaSturgeon become Scotland's 1st woman First Minister today - history in the making

Earlier today

Alex Salmond in his final message as First Minster

tweeted: With Historic Scotland staff at Bute House on final day in office. With thanks for all their help over the years.

ALex Salmond

Votes being verified

MSPs chat in the chamber
MSPs chat in a relaxed Scottish Parliament chamber as the votes for the next first minister of Scotland are verfied


The Salmond-Sturgeon leadership was a success for the party.

After the SNP's 2007 election win Ms Sturgeon became Scotland's deputy first minister and health secretary.

Standing ovation in Holyrood
MSPs give Alex Salmond standing ovation after his final speech as first minister

Some five years after taking on the health brief, Ms Sturgeon accepted one of the Scottish government's biggest roles, overseeing the independence referendum.

Ms Sturgeon was officially appointed as the first female Leader of the Scottish National Party on 14 November 2014 at the Autumn Conference in Perth.

On twitter

Tadzio G-Bruce: Why anyone would want a Conservative as First Minister after the lies and false promises that party has fed to Scotland is beyond me.

Don Forth: Interesting contrast in speeches of FM candidates. Sturgeon, confident & mature, speaking for Scots & women. Davidson like a school debater.

Alexbaskhanov: Did Sturgeon just vote for herself aha?


BBC political reporter Andrew Black has compiled a

brief history of Nicola Sturgeon's political career.

Born in the North Ayrshire town of Irvine in 1970, Ms Sturgeon became an SNP member at the age of 16.

Nicola Sturgeon
Nicola Sturgeon was in her early twenties when she faced the media to talk SNP politics

After studying law at Glasgow University and working as a solicitor at the city's Drumchapel Law Centre, Ms Sturgeon's entry into full-time politics came at the age of 29, when she was elected to the new Holyrood parliament in 1999, as a Glasgow regional MSP.

In 2004 when John Swinney quit as leader, Ms Sturgeon launched her bid for the top job. Then came the unexpected news Alex Salmond would stand as leader - for a second time.


Mr Salmond is in a rather unfamiliar seat, two rows behind Nicola Sturgeon in the centre of the chamber. That may take some getting used to.

On twitter

Fiona Edwards: How odd to see Alex Salmond not on the front row!!! #firstminister.

Yasmin: Congrats to #NicolaSturgeon on her first day of being First Minister :) this is a new start for #Scotland. Miss you though, #AlexSalmond.

Ian Blackford: Nicola Sturgeon's opening remarks in her pitch for First Minister gracious and inclusive. A good start for her leadership.

Public viewing

Nicola Sturgeon family
Nicola Sturgeon's family, including her husband and parents, sit in the public gallery of the Holyrood chamber

The public gallery is packed for the vote, including Nicola Sturgeon's family. Alex Salmond - the former First Minister - is also in attendance with the other MSPs.

Voting begins

Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick
Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick explains parliamentary procedure to MSPs

With the speeches concluded, MSPs are now voting on who will become First Minister - Ruth Davidson, or Nicola Sturgeon.