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There is a strong electoral case for this though: One recognised tendency in British politics has always been that when people are sick of the Tories, nice middle class Tory types will vote Liberal and help Labour get in that way. At every election where Labour has taken power except 1997 the Liberals have also gained votes. (Up 0.9% in 1923, 5.8% in 1929, 2.3% in 1945, 5.3% in 1964, 11.8% in 1974, and down 1% in 1997.)
1997 leaves the question: Did Labour win Liberals, or Tories? Was there a "Tories go Liberal, Liberals go Labour" effect, or did Labour win over Tories while Liberals stuck to Ashdown?
But then in 2001 and 2005 things go all weirdy wobbly with the Lib Dems running to the left of Labour on all sorts of issues and even the Conservatives having a pop at it on tuition fees (opportunism, but they still did it!). Then 2010 happened and we all know how that went.
Anyway, it's a shame our Labour party didn't follow the trajectory of New Zealand: Labour there did Thatcherism from 1984-90, got it all out of their system and caused untold social harm in the process, sold off the trains and the planes despite promising they wouldn't. People were sufficiently upset (about the social harm, not the vehicles) that Labour feared coming third in the 1990 election, so were overjoyed when they merely went down to the biggest defeat of a sitting government in their nation's history.
Then in they came back to power in 1999 and mixed the electorally useful parts of Blairism (mostly late-TV era campaign techniques) with policies like renationalising the trains and the planes, creating a state owned bank, abolishing workfare, creating tax credits but branding them properly so people actually know what on earth they are, calling the Iraq war illegal, and more.
In part as a result of delivering a government that most people can basically agree was alright within living memory, NZ Labour returned to govt in 2017. Unlike UK Labour, which is spiraling the plughole like a discount Lloyd George Liberal.