February 10, 2015 1:12 pm
Updated: February 10, 2015 6:59 pm

Eve Adams’ former rival welcomes her to the Liberals

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WATCH: Mike Le Couteur explains why political power couple Eve Adams and Dimitri Soudas are facing a tough fight after defecting to the Liberal party.

OTTAWA – Navdeep Bains calls Eve Adams a tough competitor – and he should know.

After all, the three-time Liberal MP lost his Mississauga-Brampton seat to neophyte Adams in the 2011 federal election.

“I know she’s a good campaigner,” Bains, who is now the Liberal candidate in Mississauge-Malton, said in an interview.

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“She’s got a good work ethic, she works hard, she’s very determined.”

And now, following the surprise revelation that Adams is crossing the floor to the Justin Trudeau Liberals, she is on his team.

And Bains is ok with that.

“We welcome her to the Liberal Party. Very happy to see her engaged and working for us now,” he said.

READ MORE: Why did the Liberals want Eve Adams?

Adams was a Mississauga, Ont. city councillor when she beat Bains, first elected in 2004, by more than 5,000 votes last election as part of the so-called blue wave in the Greater Toronto Area.

This year, the GTA is set to gain another 10 seats as part of the federal riding redistribution by Elections Canada.

MP Adams says “soul searching” convinced her to leave Conservatives

In 2011, the Conservatives won all but one of 24 ridings in the 905 area of Toronto. It may account for the Liberals’ open-arms embrace of Adams, a one-time staunch Conservative who is engaged to Dimitri Soudas, the former executive director of the party.

Soudas expressed his support for Adams on Twitter, and will be involved in helping her campaign to secure the nomination in an unannounced Toronto riding. She is said to be considering Finance Minister Joe Oliver’s Eglinton-Lawrence seat.

Liberal MP Navdeep Bains holds a news conference in Ottawa,Tuesday February 27, 2007. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand

Bains said he learned of Adams’ defection at the same time as everybody else – at a surprise new conference with Trudeau on Monday morning.

Was he shocked to see his former rival standing with his long-time party?

“For me, I’ve been hearing that many Conservatives are unhappy with (Prime Minister) Stephen Harper. Many people are happy with his leadership style, his divisive politics, so I’m not surprised,” he said.

Bains also brushed off concerns about Adams’ past troubles in securing the Conservative nomination in Oakville North-Burlington. Following allegations of misbehaviour on both sides, Adams and her competitor, Natalia Lishchyna, were told by the party to step aside.

And on Monday, Conservative party president John Walsh said he barred Adams from running for the Conservatives in the upcoming election due to the “misconduct” from her previous nomination battle.

Stephen Harper on MP Eve Adams crossing the floor

Adams allegedly sought to run in Mississauga-Malton – where Bains will run this year.

When it comes to securing the Liberal nomination, Adams “will be subject to [the] same rules as anyone else in terms of a green-light vetting process and the nomination process,” said Bains.

“The same rules will apply to her, for sure.”

 

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