'I'll go tomorrow if they want me to' - Cliff Jordan responds to fallout from criticism of Norfolk MPs
PUBLISHED: 09:29 16 March 2018 | UPDATED: 10:12 16 March 2018
The leader of Norfolk County Council has said he will stand down if asked after making controversial comments in which he branded some of his own party's MPs as "also-rans" who do not work hard enough to help the county.
During a BBC Radio Norfolk interview with Nick Conrad on Friday morning, Conservative Cliff Jordan said he stood by his comments and had received “a lot” of calls in support since making them.
However, Mr Jordan said he understood that “feathers have been ruffled” and that his job hung in the balance as a result.
“If they don’t want me here I’ll go. I’ll go tomorrow. My wife would be delighted,” he said.
Mr Jordan made the controversial comments during an interview with Mr Conrad on Thursday morning, saying he was “fed up” with MPs who “run down” Norfolk.
He specifically criticised South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss, who, as chief secretary to the treasury has a key role over funding for local government, and said he had only once met his own party’s chairman, Great Yarmouth MP Brandon Lewis,
He said he had never met Norwich South Labour MP Clive Lewis, that Norwich North Conservative MP Chloe Smith was difficult to get hold of and North Norfolk Lib Dem MP Norman Lamb criticised “incessantly”.
Asked during Friday’s follow up interview if he was surprised by the reaction to what he had said, Mr Jordan replied: “I’m not surprised, it’s all tribal isn’t it?”
He said he had not been contacted by any of the MP’s he named or from Conservative Party leaders since making the comments.
“I haven’t brought the party into disrepute at all.”
However, he felt there was a 70pc chance that he would not remain leader in the council much longer believing there were senior Conservative Party members in the county who were “gunning” for him.
In an earlier interview with Mr Conrad, Mr Lamb described Mr Jordan’s comments as a “tirade” and accused the county council leader of not showing interest “in the things that really matter”.
Mr Lamb defended his track record and said he had worked on “countless” cross party campaigns for the good of Norfolk and he was “always” prepared to work with Mr Jordan.