Bruce Hyer, a Member of Parliament from northern Ontario, has quit the NDP to sit as an Independent in the House of Commons. He is the second MP from the social democratic party to jump ship since last May’s federal election. In January, Quebec MP Lise St-Denis crossed over to join the third-place Liberal Party.
The Thunder Bay, Ont. MP was one of two NDP caucus members to break with their party to vote with the Conservatives in favour of abolishing the long-gun registry. Then-interm leader Nycole Turmel punished Hyer and John Rafferty, the other MP who voted with the government, by stripping them of their critic roles and preventing them from rising to ask questions in the House of Commons.
Hyer hasn’t explained the reason for his departure from the NDP. He was not given any critic responsibilities in new leader Tom Mulcair’s shadow cabinet, which was revealed last week.