Harper announced his cabinet today after being sworn in as Canada's new Prime Minister. A CBC news article uses the word "surprise" in its title, but I'm not surprised by the actions described.
Rewind to a year ago... Belinda Stronach jumps to the Liberal party to accept an offer as a cabinet minister - also giving the Liberals the one extra vote they need in a confidence vote. This was Harper's reaction to Stronach's move (CBC article):
"I could see this coming," Harper said, adding that he felt "a sense of relief" that Stronach had left before the beginning of a general election campaign and not during one.
"There's no grand principle involved in this decision, just ambition," Harper said.
He said he recently told his wife that he "thought it had become obvious to Belinda that her leadership ambitions would not be reached in this party regardless of whether or not we won the next election."
Harper added that as a result of expressing that belief to Stronach, "I expected to have problems."
But he said it is Stronach who will now have problems – when she faces the voters in her riding of Newmarket-Aurora.
"This will ultimately negatively affect Belinda Stronach's chances of being re-elected," he said.
Now, the Right Honourable Stephen Harper has lured David Emerson, a man just now elected as a Liberal in Vancouver, to become a Conservative in his cabinet. Nice work.
THEN, on the issue of elected officials, one of the items in Harper's platform was senate reform. So, 2 weeks after being elected, Harper gives an unelected individual a cabinet position. Nice Work again.
I don't necessarily disagree with party hopping and giving unelected people cabinet positions. The thing is that P.M. Harper did, at one point speak out quite strongly against it.
Keep up the good work dude.