Bev Oda becomes the latest former Progressive Conservative to abandon Stephen Harper's ship
Bev Oda's resignation from cabinet and Parliament today didn't include the usual homily about wanting to spend more time with her family.
Instead, the Durham Conservative MP issued a statement talking up her accomplishments as the minister of international cooperation.
Some will probably link Oda's decision to leave politics at the end of this month to an expense-account scandal earlier this year, in which she tried to bill taxpayers for a limousine and a $16 glass of orange juice. In the process, she became something of a national joke.
Others will undoubtedly recall how she misled Parliament before the last election.
But I'm left wondering if there may be something deeper going on.
Oda is a former Progressive Conservative. Another former Progressive Conservative, Lee Richardson, announced his sudden resignation from Parliament on May 30.
A third former Progressive Conservative who served in Stephen Harper's government, CIBC vice chair Jim Prentice, recently wrote an article criticizing the feds for their approach to the export of bitumen.
Prentice quit the cabinet in November 2010, ostensibly to spend more time with his family.
Meanwhile, Harper's parliamentary secretary, Dean Del Mastro, is under investigation by Elections Canada for allegedly exceeding his campaign-spending limit in 2008. And the Conservative Party of Canada is coming under fire in the robocall affair.
If Defence Minister Peter MacKay, the last leader of the Progressive Conservatives, suddenly announces his departure from politics because he wants to spend time with his family, then Oda's resignation might take on greater significance.
As things stand now, it's not likely to be more than a one- or two-day story.
Follow Charlie Smith on Twitter at twitter.com/csmithstraight.