Simard resigned from the PC caucus this week and chose to sit as an independent MPP because of her opposition to Ford’s announcement to cancel a planned francophone university and eliminate the francophone advocate commissioner.
Simard represents a riding in eastern Ontario that is mostly francophone, so it’s no surprise that she would take a principled stance against the premier’s policy, but, in reality, what has she accomplished?
Her exit certainly hasn’t motivated the premier to rethink his decision to gut francophone services in Ontario; in fact, she has now placed herself in a political netherworld where she has no voice and no impact on government policy.
WATCH: Ford says PCs ‘more united than ever’ after MPP Simard resigns from caucus
As an independent MPP, she is banished to the obscure back benches in the legislature with little to no staff support and no access to government ministers to deal with issues that her constituents may have.
And while some of her supporters may applaud her righteous stance to defend francophone policies, there will certainly be others who voted for her because she was the PC candidate, who will be offended by her defection.
It’s noteworthy too that independent MPPs or MPs for that matter, rarely get re-elected, so Simard’s principled stance, as admirable as it may be, is a soon-to-be-forgotten story that will relegate her to political obscurity, which indicates that her 15 minutes of political fame is about to come to an abrupt end.