Keir Starmer lets slip that EU anthem 'sums up the Labour party'

Keir Starmer

Sir Keir Starmer has let slip that he believes the EU anthem, Ode to Joy, is the song which "sums up the Labour Party"

Millie Cooke

By Millie Cooke

Published: 24/11/2023

- 10:21

Starmer admitted he thinks the song has a 'sense of moving forward to a better place'

Sir Keir Starmer has let slip that he believes the EU anthem, Ode to Joy, is the song which "sums up the Labour Party".

He said the song has "a sense of destiny", adding that it has a "sense of moving forward to a better place".

The comments were made in an interview with Classic FM.

Asked what piece of classical music "sums up the Labour Party", Starmer responded: "One of the pieces I've got is Beethoven's 9th Symphony, the choral Ode to Joy…

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"It has got a sense of destiny and is hugely optimistic…

"It's that sense of moving forward to a better place, is incredibly powerful."

Earlier this year, Starmer confirmed he is planning to renegotiate the UK's relationship with the EU if he is elected.

The Labour Leader said he wants a closer trading relationship with the bloc, dismissing the 2020 deal struck by Boris Johnson as "not a good deal".

The deal is up for review in 2025. Starmer said he owes it to his children to strike a new partnership with Brussels and rebuild the relationship.

Starmer said the 2025 renewal date is an "important" moment to reset relations with the bloc.

The Leader of the Opposition, who is nearly 20 points ahead of the Conservative Party in the polls, told the Financial Times: "I do think we can have a closer trading relationship as well. That’s subject to further discussion."

Speaking about the current deal, he added: "I think there’s more that can be achieved across the board."

Starmer continued: "Almost everyone recognises the deal Johnson struck is not a good deal — it’s far too thin.

"As we go into 2025 we will attempt to get a much better deal for the UK."


It is not yet known whether the EU will be open to a renegotiation of the deal.

While the Labour leader has said he will not rejoin the EU if he becomes Prime Minister, he has come under fire for increasing cooperation with the bloc.

In September, he announced plans for a cross-border migrant returns deal with the EU, which could see the UK forced to take more than 100,000 migrants from the EU per year.

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