Labour embracing 'Yorkshire principles' in dropping key spending pledges, MP claims
In an Interview with The Yorkshire Post to mark the second anniversary of becoming an MP, she said that fiscal responsibility was something voters in the region appreciate ahead of the next election.
When asked if she was disappointed about the slew of policy ideas and campaign pledges, many of which at the more ambitious end of a potential Labour Government, Ms Leadbeater conceded that the party has “more work to do” in terms of creating a vision for the country.
“People in Yorkshire know bull**** when they see it,” she said, adding that it would be “wrong” for the party to over-promise because “then all you're going to do is let people down”.
“Yorkshire people are a clever bunch, they're not stupid. They know that if you're going to say you're going to deliver things, you're going to have to pay for it.
“We are only going to say we're going to do things if we can tell you how we're going to pay for them. And a really good Yorkshire principle.
“My mum and dad always used to say to me: “If you haven't got the money in your bank, you can't afford it.”
“You work hard, you earn your money, and you spend the money you’ve got and you don't spend any more.”
However, the boundary review has seen her old seat, which was also held by her sister Jo Cox, split into two seats of Spen Valley, and Dewsbury and Batley.
The new boundaries of the seats mean that, on paper, Ms Leadbeater has gone for the more difficult of the two seats to win, a decision she does not regret.
“I think anybody who has been around politics for a long time would say, well, as a Labour MP, why would you not just make the easy choice and go for what should be a safe Labour seat,” she said.
“But I'm not a traditional politician or a typical politician, and I think for me, it was really important that I represent an area where I have a very strong connection.
“Whilst I used to go down Dewsberry, when we were kids to Dorothy Perkins and WH Smiths to do a bit of shopping on a weekend, I don't really know that area that well.
“Whereas the Spen Valley, I've got a really good understanding of every single town and village, almost street by street knowledge, because most of my family and friends live there.”
Ms Leadbeater said that she felt she, after two years, had set out what she wanted to do: have her own identity alongside the pride in her sister.
“I obviously came with a story. I came with a dreadful story and I came with an identity of being Jo Cox's sister, and I was very clear that whilst I will always be unbelievably proud to be Jo’s sister, I am Kim, and I needed to carve out my own reputation,” she said.
“I think I have my own identity, but it doesn't concern me at all that a big part of that identity is being Jo’s sister.”