Tracey Watkins asks do smear campaigns work?
Short answer – of course.
If they didn’t, they would not be a time-honoured political tool.
But the trick is maintaining the appearance of keeping your hands clean. . .
That’s the difficult party because mud sticks – to the person to whom its thrown and the hands of the one throwing it.
Politics is – relatively – clean in New Zealand and for good reason.
Most people aren’t interested in the dirty games that take the focus off what matters and if the dirty stuff goes on too long it can backfire with people feeling sympathy for the victim and derision for the attacker.