To be frank with you, I find the Turmel membership « scandal » more of a small drop in the sea of political cynicism.
However, one thing is sure which is quite strange, floor crossing is something which is quite frequent with current opposition leaders in the Canadian Parliament. Just to put it this way, this is a not a good sign, especially with a party leader.
The Liberal Party interim leader, Bob Rae, was a former NDP federal and provincial MP who became Ontario’s only NDP premier. After a very unpopular administration he disappeared from the political map, only to came back when the Liberals had their leadership contest in 2006.
The leader of the Independents who are members of the Bloc Québécois, Louis Plamondon is a former Bleu (a Progressive Conservative of the Québec nationalist wing) who crossed over to the Bloc in 1990. This is why he was elected non-stop since 1984, even through he was first elected as a Bloc MP only in 1993.
Even the leader of the Green Party and the party sole MP, is not hiding the fact that she was close for some time to the Mulroney’s PC administration.
With all this, it’s no wonder that people are so cynical about politics, whatever some of these floor crossing are more and less opportunistic than others.