The face of Labour's In campaign? Photo: Getty Images
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Labour's next split: the referendum

Labour may soon find itself just as riven by Europe as the Conservative Party.

Chuka Umunna has called on Labour to be part of a "broad, grassroots campaign" to keep Britain in the European Union, warning that a narrow campaign would see the party and the In campaign cast as "a cosy club of established political parties and big businessess".

The remarks come after Alistair Darling, the former Labour Chancellor and head of Better Together, the cross-party campaign to keep Scotland in the United Kingdom, slapped down Andy Burnham's suggestion that the cross-party campaign for the Union was responsible for Scottish Labour's travails. 

"That explanation doesn’t explain why we were trounced in 2011 or why we lost in 2007," Darling tells the Times, "The Scottish Labour party’s problems are greater than that. Never forget we won the referendum.”

Labour's shadow business secretary and former leadership candidate set out his ideas for how the referendum campaign should be fought and won in an interview with Progress magazine. He also shed further light on why he - along with his campaign lieutenants - opted to endorse Liz Kendall's campaign for the leadership

"She has asked all the questions, she has made the arguments that I would have made if I was still in the contest," Umunna said. The MP for Streatham believes that the "three challenges" Labour must tackle are: "how do you deliver good public services in a fiscally cold climate; secondly, how do you harness all of the energy that technological change is bringing to create opportunities when that technology is destroying jobs people have done for generations; and thirdly, how do we pay our way in the world?" Kendall, Umunna, believes, "has started to map out the answers in a fearless way, a courageous way."

But it is the question of Europe and how to respond to it that may come to dominate Labour's thinking over the coming months.

Stephen Bush is editor of the Staggers, the New Statesman’s political blog.

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“Trembling, shaking / Oh, my heart is aching”: the EU out campaign song will give you chills

But not in a good way.

You know the story. Some old guys with vague dreams of empire want Britain to leave the European Union. They’ve been kicking up such a big fuss over the past few years that the government is letting the public decide.

And what is it that sways a largely politically indifferent electorate? Strikes hope in their hearts for a mildly less bureaucratic yet dangerously human rights-free future? An anthem, of course!

Originally by Carly You’re so Vain Simon, this is the song the Leave.EU campaign (Nigel Farage’s chosen group) has chosen. It is performed by the singer Antonia Suñer, for whom freedom from the technofederalists couldn’t come any suñer.

Here are the lyrics, of which your mole has done a close reading. But essentially it’s just nature imagery with fascist undertones and some heartburn.

"Let the river run

"Let all the dreamers

"Wake the nation.

"Come, the new Jerusalem."

Don’t use a river metaphor in anything political, unless you actively want to evoke Enoch Powell. Also, Jerusalem? That’s a bit... strong, isn’t it? Heavy connotations of being a little bit too Englandy.

"Silver cities rise,

"The morning lights,

"The streets that meet them,

"And sirens call them on

"With a song."

Sirens and streets. Doesn’t sound like a wholly un-authoritarian view of the UK’s EU-free future to me.

"It’s asking for the taking,

"Trembling, shaking,

"Oh, my heart is aching."

A reference to the elderly nature of many of the UK’s eurosceptics, perhaps?

"We’re coming to the edge,

"Running on the water,

"Coming through the fog,

"Your sons and daughters."

I feel like this is something to do with the hosepipe ban.

"We the great and small,

"Stand on a star,

"And blaze a trail of desire,

"Through the dark’ning dawn."

Everyone will have to speak this kind of English in the new Jerusalem, m'lady, oft with shorten’d words which will leave you feeling cringéd.

"It’s asking for the taking.

"Come run with me now,

"The sky is the colour of blue,

"You’ve never even seen,

"In the eyes of your lover."

I think this means: no one has ever loved anyone with the same colour eyes as the EU flag.

I'm a mole, innit.