Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford MP Yvette Cooper has announced she is standing to be the leader of the Labour party.
Speaking exclusively to the Express, Ms Cooper confirmed she would be putting herself forward to replace Ed Miliband who announced his resignation following last week’s general election result.
Ms Cooper said: “I am going to put my name forward for nomination. It’s very disappointing that we lost the election but that is because we, as a party, wanted to do so much to support families across the country.
“But that disappointment is something that motivates me and is actually one of the reasons why I’ve put my name forward.
“I want to be a strong leader who represents the key Labour values and fights for communities and families like those in our area.”
The party’s former leader Mr Miliband resigned on Friday after Labour lost 56 seats in Scotland to the Scottish National Party and won almost 100 fewer seats across the UK than the Conservatives.
Ms Cooper said: “I have been thinking about standing for some time and I have spoken to fellow MPs and Labour colleagues and I made the decision earlier this week.
“We, as party, have got to work harder and have to do more to show how much help we can give hard-working people who are ambitious for the future – and I intend to do just that.”
Bookies’ favourite Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis ruled himself out of the leadership contest on Sunday.
Ms Cooper is now the third favourite to be the next leader of the party, with Streatham MP Chuka Umunna and Andy Burnham in front of her in the running.
Wakefield Council leader Peter Box said he thought Ms Cooper would be a “great leader.”
He said: “Of course I would support Yvette. I think she would be a great leader for the party and a great Prime Minister come 2020.
“She has all the characteristics and traits that are needed and I have seen her with people in the community and she understands them.
“I think she has great enthusiasm and I think in 2020 she would make Labour’s case very well. It would be great to have a woman leader too.”