Sunday, May 22, 2005
Belinda Stronach, Canadian MP for Newmarket-Aurora crossed the floor from the Conservatives to join the Liberals just days before a scheduled confidence vote in the Liberal government. She was immediately rewarded by being appointed to the cabinet as Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister responsible for Democratic Renewal.
“I’ve been uncomfortable for some time with the direction the Conservative party was taking,” Stronach said. “I regret to say that I do not believe the party leader is truly sensitive to the needs of each part of the country and just how big and complex Canada really is.”
She disagreed with the party on its stance on the federal budget, same-sex marriage, and Conservative leadership’s alliance with the separatist Bloc Québécois to bring down the government.
Two days after Stronach switched parties, the ruling Liberals won a crucial vote for their budget by a single vote. If Stronach had not joined the Liberals and voted for the budget, the government would have fallen, forcing a new federal election.