Charles Kennedy announces that he is resigning as leader of the Liberal Democrats. Kennedy’s resignation was the final act of a turbulent period in the party’s history which began after the 2005 general election. Concern about Kennedy’s drinking began to be expressed and although Kennedy took steps to assert his authority discontent grew, culminating in a letter signed by half the members of the shadow cabinet asking Kennedy to consider his position. In January, following information that ITV woulf be running a story about his drinking, Kennedy convened a press conference to announce that he was calling a leadership election in which he would be a candidate. This was the last straw for most of the party’s MPs who indicated that they would not serve under him. Faced with this ultimatum Kennedy resigned two days later.