OTTAWA – A Toronto-area Tory essentially barred from seeking that party’s nomination in the next election is crossing the floor to sit with the Liberals.
Conservative MP Eve Adams made the surprise announcement at a news conference with Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau Monday morning.
Adams said she has tired of the politics of her political party.
“This is not about having a tough day at the office, everybody has grumpy bosses from time to time,” she said.
“This is about the fact that my values simply don’t align with this team and I’d like to continue serving Canadians.”
But Adams had harsh words for a party and its policies that she’s championed since she was 14 years old, saying the Tories’ recently-introduced income-splitting tax measures for families don’t actually benefit Canadians.
“I cannot support mean-spirited measures that benefit only the richest few,” she said.
“I can no longer support mean-spirited leadership that divides people instead of bringing them together. We need a kind, generous and strong leadership that champions a shared vision for how to make Canada work for everyone. I want to work with someone who inspires, not with fear mongerers and bullies.”
Adams was first elected for the Conservatives in 2011 in the Toronto-area riding of Mississauga—Brampton South but had hoped to run again for the Tories in the newly-created riding of Oakville North-Burlington.
A bitter nomination contest ensued and she was forced to drop out, partially because of allegations that her fiancee Dimitri Soudas, at the time the executive director of the Conservative Party, was meddling in the campaign.
He subsequently lost his job as well. The status of their current relationship is unclear and Adams declined to address it Monday morning.
Adams said she’ll run for a Liberal nomination in the Greater Toronto Area but declined to identify the riding. She’ll sit with the Liberal caucus for now.
She said she approached the party a few weeks ago about the prospect of joining their team and Trudeau said he had raised the hypothetical of a floor crosser with his caucus last week, without saying who it might be.
“The very strong sense that caucus expressed was that what is most important is the hard work done in the riding, the building of a relationship with constituents and bringing them along and demonstrating a local focus as a counter to some of the inevitable accusations that get thrown around any time someone makes a decision like this,” Trudeau said.
Trudeau said Adams has proved herself a devoted local politician and looks forward to having her on the team.