Liberals lose senator to Conservatives
Liberal Senator Anne Cools, an ardent opponent of same-sex marriage, joined the Conservative Party of Canada Tuesday.
The first black to be appointed to the Senate in 1984, Cools cited disappointment with the Paul Martin government for her decision to switch party loyalty.
"Like so many Canadians, I had been hopeful that Mr. Martin would initiate a new era, a genesis and renewal in the Liberal government," she said in a statement.
"I had hoped for an affirmation of responsible government, diligent stewardship of public moneys and renewed leadership, accountable to elected members and the public, not its paid advisers. But we have seen the opposite."
She chose the Conservatives rather than sit as an Independent, because of "personal respect" for Harper, whom she described as "Canada's hope for change."
Deputy Conservative Leader Peter MacKay described Cools as "a person of deep spiritual conviction and a valued friend."
The defection didn't seem to surprise the Liberals. "It's no surprise given Senator Cools' longstanding disagreements with many Liberal party policies over the past decade," said party strategist Heidi Bonnell.