The Conservatives are likely to use more and more negative campaigning in the run up to the General Election to dissuade voters from picking a new party.
As Prime Minister David Cameron uses increasingly critical language to describe Labour, recently calling the party a “bunch of hypocritical, holier-than-thou, hopeless, sneering socialists”, Brunel University London’s Professor of Political Science Justin Fisher told Sky News the tactic wasn’t surprising.
He said the negative attack was indicative of tactics often used by a party in power to put down any challenges to leadership. In contrast, rival parties look to enhance their own profile, though negative campaigning can still focus on a party in power’s failures in office.
Prof Fisher said negative politics could be successful – to a point. He added: “There’s a fine line to be trodden. It can work if you’re trying to portray the opposition party as being inexperienced.” However, in the run-up to the 2005 General Election: “Voters reacted very badly when Michael Howard portrayed Tony Blair as being a liar.”