Angela Eagle has described Labour as harmonious over the European Union referendum, compared to Conservatives who are divided about the vote. The pro-European shadow business secretary said Labour was not "split" on the issue unlike the government and that her party was determined to remain in the union.
Speaking on the Andrew Marr show, Eagle said: "We are not split down the middle like the Conservative Party on this. I think there are only five [Labour] members of parliament who are going to campaign for 'Out'.
"We are absolutely determined and united in our determination to make certain that we get this right and stay in the European Union and by the time the 24th of June comes along we would have made the right decision for the country."
Jeremy Corbyn said he is supporting the "In" campaign to ensure investment, jobs and protection for workers, but has been criticised for a lack of enthusiasm. Asked if her leader was whole-heartedly behind remaining in the EU, Eagle said: "I think he recognises that it is Labour votes that will keep us in Europe and its really, really important for our future as a country that we don't turn our back in the largest single market in the world, where half of our exports go, [and] that we actually understand workers' rights are on the ballot paper at this referendum."
On the issue of immigration, Eagle said EU integration was not solely responsible for influxes of migration. "I think if you look at places like Norway or Switzerland, who are outside the European Union and have greater levels of EU immigration as a percentage of their population than we do," she added.
"So the EU isn't actually the problem with immigration. We have to make our way in a much more interconnected world and we can only do that by having a race to the top rather than a race to the bottom, which is what I fear is what our Conservative government prefers."
The Wallasey MP said the EU was key to dealing with mass migration across the continent, which she said had been caused by the "collapse of various regimes in the Middle East", creating "Biblical kinds of scenes on the European boarders".
After giving Corbyn only her tentative backing during a previous interview on the BBC show, Eagle went one better this time to say changing leadership was not on the Labour party's agenda. "All I can say is I think the leadership campaign that is going on in British politics is at the moment is going on in the Conservative Party. It certainly isn't going on in the Labour party. We are getting on trying to do the work that will create new policies so we can appeal to the British people."