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Encyclopedia > Negative campaigning

Negative campaigning is having too much doodoo in your underpants. In the broadest sense, the term covers any rhetoric which refers to an opponent, if only by way of contrast, but can also include attacks meant to destroy an opponent's character, which may veer into ad hominem. Political campaign Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A political campaign is an organized effort to influence the decision making process within a group. ... The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      Politics is the process by which groups of people make decisions. ... Campaign finance refers to the means by which money is raised for election campaigns. ... In the past, political campaigns were conducted using traditional methods of personal contact, such as television and radio media purchasing, print advertising and direct mail. ... Opposition research often referred to as oppo is the section of an election campaign designed to investigate the life and record of the opposing candidate. ... Political consulting is the business which has grown up around advising and assisting political campaigns, primarily in the United States. ... In politics, campaign advertising is the use of paid media (newspapers, radio, television, etc. ... Political campaign Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      Canvassing is the systematic contacting of individuals in a target group, often in a particular geographic area. ... Political campaign Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      An election promise is a promise made to the public by a politician who is trying to win an election. ... Get out the vote, sometimes GOTV, is a term used to describe two categories of political activity, both aimed at increasing the number of votes cast in one or more elections. ... Lawn signs placed near a polling place in the U.S., July 2004 Lawn signs are one of the most visible features of an election campaign in some countries. ... An attack ad in election terms is an advertisement whose message is meant as an attack against another candidate or political party. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A push poll is a political campaign technique in which an individual or organization attempts to influence or alter the view of respondents under the guise of conducting a poll. ... A smear campaign or smear tactics are deliberate attempts by an individual or group to malign another individual or groups reputation. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Look up Candidate in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In United States and other democracies, political campaigns larger than a few individuals generally include a campaign manager whose role is to coordinate the campaigns operations. ... The staff of political campaigns are the people who get paid to formulate and implement the strategy needed to win an election. ... Look up ad hominem in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Negative campaigning can be found in most marketplaces where ideas are contested. In U.S. politics mudslinging has been called "as American as Mississippi mud." Some research suggests negative campaigning is the norm in all political venues, mitigated only by the dynamics of a particular contest. [1] Motto: (Out Of Many, One) (traditional) In God We Trust (1956 to date) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington D.C. Largest city New York City None at federal level (English de facto) Government Federal constitutional republic  - President George Walker Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence from... Mudslinging is the exchange of insults between candidates in an election. ...

Contents

Techniques

There are a number of techniques used in negative campaigning, the among most open and often most effective is running advertisements attacking an opponent's personality or record. Generally speaking, advertising is the paid promotion of goods, services, companies and ideas by an identified sponsor. ...


One of the most famous such ads was Daisy Girl by the campaign of Lyndon B. Johnson that successfully portrayed Republican Barry Goldwater as threatening nuclear war. Common negative campaign techniques include painting an opponent as soft on criminals, dishonest, corrupt, or a danger to the nation. One common negative campaigning tactic is attacking the other side for running a negative campaign. Daisy, sometimes known as Daisy Girl, or Peace Little Girl is perhaps the most famous campaign commercial of all time. ... “LBJ” redirects here. ... Barry Morris Goldwater (January 1, 1909 – May 29, 1998) was a five-term United States Senator from Arizona (1953–1965, 1969–87) and the Republican Partys nominee for president in the 1964 election. ... Nuclear War is a card game designed by Douglas Malewicki, and originally published in 1966. ...


Dirty tricks are also common in negative political campaigns. These generally involve secretly leaking damaging information to the media. This isolates a candidate from backlash and also does not cost any money. The material must be substantive enough to attract media interest, however, and if the truth is discovered it could severely damage a campaign. Other dirty tricks include trying to feed an opponent's team false information hoping they will use it and embarrass themselves.


Often a campaign will use outside organizations, such as lobby groups, to launch attacks. These can be claimed to be coming from a neutral source and if the allegations turn out not to be true the attacking candidate will not be damaged if the links cannot be proven. Negative campaigning can be conducted by proxy. For instance, highly partisan ads were placed in the 2004 U.S. presidential election by allegedly independent bodies like MoveOn.org and Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. This article is about the political effort. ... Presidential election results map. ... A group of MoveOn volunteers helped the get-out-the-vote drive in Cincinnati in the run-up to the 2004 U.S. presidential election. ... Swift Vets and POWs for Truth, formerly known as the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (SBVT), is an organization of American Swift boat veterans and former prisoners of war of the Vietnam War, formed during the 2004 presidential election campaign. ...


Push polls are attacks disguised as telephone polls. They might ask a question like "How would you react if Candidate A was revealed to beat his wife?", giving the impression that Candidate A might beat his wife. Members of the media and of the opposing party are deliberately not called making these tactics all but invisible and unprovable. A push poll is a political campaign technique in which an individual or organization attempts to influence or alter the view of respondents under the guise of conducting a poll. ...


G. Gordon Liddy played a major role in developing these tactics during the Nixon playing an important advisory of rules that lead to the campaign of 1972. Karl Rove, the architect of much of George W. Bush's campaigns is considered a master of negative campaigning. James Carville, mastermind of Bill Clinton's election, is also a major proponent of negative tactics.[citation needed] Lee Atwater, best known for being an advisor to presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, also pioneered many negative campaign techniques seen in political campaigns today. George Gordon Battle Liddy (born November 30, 1930) was the chief operative for U.S. President Richard Nixons White House Plumbers unit. ... Karl Christian Rove (born December 25, 1950) is Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush until the end of August 2007. ... James Carville (born October 25, 1944), is a liberal American political consultant, commentator, media personality, and pundit. ... William Jefferson Bill Clinton (born William Jefferson Blythe III[1] on August 19, 1946) was the 42nd President of the United States, serving from 1993 to 2001. ... Harvey Leroy Lee Atwater (February 26, 1951 – March 29, 1991) was an American Republican political consultant and strategist. ... “Reagan” redirects here. ... Order: 41st President Vice President: Dan Quayle Term of office: January 20, 1989 – January 20, 1993 Preceded by: Ronald Reagan Succeeded by: Bill Clinton Date of birth: June 12, 1924 Place of birth: Milton, Massachusetts First Lady: Barbara Pierce Bush Political party: Republican George Herbert Walker Bush, KBE (born...


Advantages

Sponsors of overt negative campaigns often cite reasons to support mass communication of negative ideas. The Office of National Drug Control Policy uses negative campaigns to steer the public away from what they perceive to be health risks. Similar negative campaigns have been used to rebut mass marketing by tobacco companies, or to discourage drunk driving. Those who conduct negative political campaigns sometimes say the public needs to know about the person he or she is voting for, even if it is bad. In other words, if a candidate’s opponent is a crook or a bad person, then he or she should be able to tell the public about it. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), a component of the Executive Office of the President of the United States, was established in 1988 by the Anti-Drug Abuse Act. ... Shredded tobacco leaf for pipe smoking Tobacco can also be pressed into plugs and sliced into flakes Tobacco is an agricultural product processed from the fresh leaves of plants in genus Nicotiana. ... Drunk driving (drink driving in the UK) or drinking and driving is the act of operating a motor vehicle after having consumed alcohol (i. ...


Cathy Allen, president of Campaign Connection of Seattle, suggested negative campaigning might be the 'proper course' during political contests in the following situations:

  • when taking on an incumbent
  • when being significantly outspent
  • when there is irrefutable information that the opponent has done something wrong
  • when the candidate has little name recognition

Campaign organizers who invest their fortunes in negative approaches do so with considerable research to support the merit of their spending. In a 1996 study, researchers concluded that "the informational benefits of negative political ads possess the capacity to promote political participation, particularly among those otherwise least well equipped for political learning." Their testing found citizens who were aware of negative advertising were more likely to vote than those who didn't express recollection of such ads.


Martin Wattenberg and Craig Brians, of the University of California, Irvine, considered in their study whether negative campaigning mobilizes or alienates voters. They concluded that data used by Stephen Ansolabehere in a 1994 American Political Science Review article to advance the hypothesis that negative campaigning demobilizes voters was flawed.


Other researchers have confirmed similar positive results from negative campaigns. Rick Farmer, PhD, an assistant professor of political science at the University of Akron found that negative ads are more memorable than positive ads when they reinforce a preexisting belief and are relevant to the central issues of a marketing campaign. Researchers at the University of Georgia found the impact of negative ads increases over time, while positive ads used to counteract negative ads lack the power of negative ads. [2] Research also suggests negative campaigning introduces controversy and raises public awareness through additional news coverage. [3] The University of Akron is an institution of higher learning located in Akron, Ohio. ... The University of Georgia (UGA) is the largest institution of higher learning in the U.S. state of Georgia. ...


Risks and consequences

Negative campaigning can evoke negative responses toward the source of the campaign. Some negative campaign tactics shift focus away from substantive issues or policies and turn attention toward personality. Some strategists say that an effect of negative campaigning is that while it motivates the base of support it can alienate centrist and undecided voters from the political process, reducing voter turnout and radicalizing politics. Voters lining up outside a Baghdad polling station during the 2005 Iraqi election. ...


Negative ads can produce a backlash. A disastrous ad was run by the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada in the 1993 Canadian federal election, apparently emphasizing Liberal Party of Canada leader Jean Chrétien's facial disability in a number of unflattering photos, with the subtext of criticizing his platforms. The ad was badly received and helped reduce the governing Conservatives to two seats. One of the images from the commercial that many felt emphasized Chrétiens face The 1993 Chrétien ad was an attack ad broadcast on television during the 1993 federal election in Canada by the Progressive Conservative Party against Liberal leader Jean Chrétien. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Popular vote map with bar graphs showing seat totals in the provinces and territories. ... The Liberal Party of Canada (French: ), colloquially known as the Grits (originally Clear Grits), is a Canadian federal political party. ... Joseph Jacques Jean Chrétien, usually known as Jean Chrétien, PC, QC, BA, BCL, LLD (h. ...


Similar backlash happened to the Liberal Party in the 2006 federal election for running an attack ad that suggested that Conservative leader Stephen Harper would use Canadian soldiers to patrol Canadian cities, and impose some kind of martial law. The ad was only available from the Liberal Party's web site for a few hours prior to the release of the attack ads on television; nevertheless, it was picked up by the media and widely criticized for its absurdity, in particular the sentence "we're not making this up; we're not allowed to make this stuff up". Liberal MP Keith Martin expressed his disapproval of "whoever the idiot who approved that ad was," shortly before Liberal leader Paul Martin (no relation) stated that he had personally approved them. The effect of the ads was to diminish the credibility of the party's other attack ads. It offended many Canadians, particularly those in the military, some of whom were fighting in Afghanistan at the time. (See Canadian federal election, 2006) Rendition of party representation in the 39th Canadian parliament decided by this election. ... Campaign negative ad picture of Stephen Harper In the 2006 federal election in Canada, the Liberal Party of Canada used attack ads against Conservative Party of Canada leader Stephen Harper. ... The Conservative Party of Canada (French: Parti conservateur du Canada), colloquially known as the Tories, is a conservative political party in Canada, formed by the merger of the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada in December 2003. ... Stephen Joseph Harper (born April 30, 1959) is the 22nd and current Prime Minister of Canada and leader of the Conservative Party of Canada. ... Rendition of party representation in the 39th Canadian parliament decided by this election. ...


Because of the possible harm that can come from being seen as a negative campaigner, candidates often pledge to refrain from negative attacks. This pledge is usually abandoned when an opponent is perceived to be "going negative," with the first retaliatory attack being, ironically, an accusation that the opponent is a negative campaigner.


While some research has found advantages and other has found disadvantages, some studies find no difference between negative and positive approaches. [4]


Controversy and regulation

Critics of negative campaigns sometimes contend that negative ads are not always used for the stated reason. In some cases, negative campaigning presents twisted or spun information under the guise of bringing hidden negatives into the light. Sometimes those who practice negative campaigning and publicity also denounce the approach when used against their side by telling the attacker to be nice, be civil, stay clean, be positive, not hurt others, not get personal, not to scare people, etc. Commentators have asserted that even calls for balance in political rhetoric best serve those with the most to hide. [5]


In commercial advertising, various regulations prohibit false advertising and broadcast campaigns to promote potentially harmful activities, such as advertising tobacco products. Similar regulations have at times been proposed to limit negative political campaigning. Such restrictions have been proposed to regulate political advertising on television and radio, where negative claims might not be fully explained due to time constraints, and would expand disclosure requirements in printed political advertising. This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


In modern Western societies, however, proposed regulation of public speech is confronted by strong traditions favoring the open exchange of ideas, and by fundamental legal protections such as those of the U.S. Constitution. Practical considerations also weigh against regulation of political speech. Using rhetorical devices such as straw man or red herring arguments, a negative campaign can insinuate an opponent holds an idea without directly accusing the opponent of favoring those ideas. Within constitutional guidelines, few regulations could lawfully control candidates' statements in public appearances, where comments are often repeated in news broadcasts. To the contrary, public figures such as politicians enjoy weaker protection against false allegations than do average citizens. A bill of rights is a list or summary of rights that are considered important and essential by a group of people. ... A straw man argument is a logical fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponents position. ... Look up red herring in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Public figure is a legal term applied in the context of defamation actions (libel and slander). ...


Notable examples

United States

Daisy, sometimes known as Daisy Girl or Peace Little Girl, is an infamous campaign television advertisement. ... Lyndon Baines Johnson (August 27, 1908–January 22, 1973), often referred to as LBJ, was an American politician. ... Barry Morris Goldwater (January 1, 1909 – May 29, 1998) was a five-term United States Senator from Arizona (1953–1965, 1969–87) and the Republican Partys nominee for president in the 1964 election. ... Presidential electoral votes by state. ... “McCain” redirects here. ... Willie Hortons mugshot on the Weekend Passes ad William R. Horton (born August 12, 1951 in Chesterfield, South Carolina) is a convicted felon who was the subject of a Massachusetts weekend furlough program that released him while serving a life sentence for murder, without the possibility of parole, providing... George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) was the 41st President of the United States, serving from 1989 to 1993. ... The United States presidential election of 1988 featured an open primary for both major parties. ... Michael Stanley Dukakis (born November 3, 1933) is an American Democratic politician, former Governor of Massachusetts, and the Democratic presidential nominee in 1988. ... Revolving Door is a famous negative television commercial made for the 1988 United States Presidential Campaign. ... Richard Milhous Nixon (January 9, 1913 – April 22, 1994) was the 37th President of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974. ... Hubert Horatio Humphrey, Jr. ... Presidential electoral votes by state. ... The United States presidential election of 1884 featured excessive mudslinging and personal acrimony. ... Samuel Dickinson Burchard (July 17, 1836 – September 1, 1901) was a nineteenth century politician and manufacturer from Wisconsin. ... Presidential electoral votes by state. ... John Forbes Kerry (born December 11, 1943) is the junior United States Senator from Massachusetts, in his fourth term of office. ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... COINTELPRO (Counter Intelligence Program) was a program of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation aimed at investigating and disrupting dissident political organizations within the United States. ... F.B.I. and FBI redirect here. ... Civil rights or positive rights are those legal rights retained by citizens and protected by the government. ... Year 1956 (MCMLVI) was a leap year starting on Sunday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Harry and Louise was the name of a television commercial funded by the Health Insurance Association of America (HIAA), a health insurance industry lobbying group, in opposition to President Bill Clintons proposed health care plan in 1993. ... Order: 42nd President Term of Office: January 20, 1993–January 20, 2001 Preceded by: George H. W. Bush Succeeded by: George W. Bush Date of birth: August 19, 1946 Place of birth: Hope, Arkansas Date of death: Place of death: First Lady: Hillary Rodham Clinton Political party: Democratic Vice... Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. ... Peta can refer to: Peta (prefix), a prefix meaning times 1015 in the International System of Units People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), an animal-rights organization People Eating Tasty Animals, a parody of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Peta, Greece, a town in the prefecture... Filmed by PETA, Covance primate-testing lab, Vienna, Virginia, 2004-5. ... KFC (full name Kentucky Fried Chicken) is a division of Yum! Brands, Inc. ... The term checkpoint may refer to: A place at which vehicles or pedestrians are stopped in order to enforce laws or security measures. ... Billboard is a weekly American magazine devoted to the music industry. ... Miller Brewing is a large American piss maker based in Milwaukee. ... Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Pepsi Cola is a non-alcoholic carbonated beverage produced and manufactured by PepsiCo. ... The wave shape (known as the dynamic ribbon device) present on all Coca-Cola cans throughout the world derives from the contour of the original Coca-Cola bottles. ...

Elsewhere

Popular vote map with bar graphs showing seat totals in the provinces and territories. ... The Progressive Conservative Party of Canada (PC) was a Canadian conservative political party that existed from 1867 to 2003. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... The Conservative Party (officially the Conservative and Unionist Party) is the second largest political party in the United Kingdom in terms of sitting Members of Parliament (MPs), the largest in terms of public membership, and the oldest political party in the United Kingdom. ... For other people of the same name, see Tony Blair (disambiguation) Anthony Charles Lynton Blair (born May 6, 1953)[1] is the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, Leader of the Labour Party, and Member of Parliament for the constituency... The Labour Party is a political party in the United Kingdom. ... For the Canadian ice hockey player, see Dave Cameron. ...

See also

Politics is the process and method of gaining or maintaining support for public or common action: the conduct of decision-making for groups. ... A political scandal is a scandal in which politicians engage in various illegal or unethical practices. ... A smear campaign or smear tactics are deliberate attempts by an individual or group to malign another individual or groups reputation. ... Political campaign Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A political campaign is an organized effort to influence the decision making process within a group. ... “Advert” redirects here. ... Anathema (in Greek Ανάθεμα) meaning originally something lifted up as an offering to the gods; later, with evolving meanings, it came to mean: to be formally set apart, banished, exiled, excommunicated or denounced, sometimes accursed. ... Opposition research often referred to as oppo is the section of an election campaign designed to investigate the life and record of the opposing candidate. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Dick Tuck (1924) was a Democratic Party campaign strategist, advance man, and political prankster. ... The propaganda model is a theory advanced by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky that alleges systemic biases in the mass media and seeks to explain them in terms of structural economic causes. ... Appeal to ridicule is a logical fallacy which presents the opponents argument in a way that appears ridiculous, often to the extent of creating a straw man of the actual argument. ... An appeal to pity (also called argumentum ad misericordiam) is a logical fallacy in which someone tries to win support for their argument or idea by exploiting their opponents feelings of pity or guilt. ... Appeal to emotion is a logical fallacy wherein the arguer (who is using this fallacy) takes advantage of emotion to prove his or her argument. ... In psychology and marketing, two concepts or stimuli are associated when the experience of one leads to the effects of another, due to repeated pairing. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... In English and American law, and systems based on them, libel and slander are two forms of defamation (or defamation of character), which is the tort or delict of making a false statement of fact that injures someones reputation. ... Prior restraint is a legal term referring to a governments actions that prevent materials from being published. ...

References

  • Wattenberg, Martin P. (Aug. 22, 1996). Negative Campaign Advertising: Demobilizer or Mobilizer. eScholarship Repository. UC Irvine, Department of Politics and Society. Retrieved on January 29, 2005.
  • Bike, William S. (March 28, 2004). Campaign Guide: Negative Campaigning. CompleteCampaigns.com. City: San Diego. Retrieved on August 3, 2005.
  • Saletan, William (November 25, 1999). Three Cheers for Negative Campaigning. Slate. City: Washington. Retrieved on August 3, 2005.
  • Does Attack Advertising Demobilize the Electorate? Stephen Ansolabehere, Shanto Iyengar, Adam Simon, Nicholas Valentino, 1994, American Political Science Review, 88:829-838
  • Winning, But Losing, Ansolabehere and Iyenger, 1996 [12]

  Results from FactBites:
 
Going Negative (3146 words)
First, negative advertising may discourage supporters of the candidate who is attacked, Attack advertising might defuse partisan support for the opposition, just as advertising in general reinforces partisan preferences.
Finally, negative campaigning may diminish the power of civic duty and may undermine the legitimacy of the entire electoral proccess.
The negative tenor of campaigns can he traced to the competitive nature of political advertising, to the activities of organized interests, and, last but not least, to the ways in which reporters cover the campaign.
Negative campaigning - definition of Negative campaigning in Encyclopedia (705 words)
Negative campaigning is trying to win an election by attacking an opponent rather than emphasizing ones own positive attributes or policies.
A demonstrated effect of negative campaigning is that while it motivates the base of support it tends to alienate centrist and undecided voters from the political process reducing voter turnout and radicalizing politics.
A certain amount of negative campaigning exists in almost all elections but in general it is viewed as being most common in American elections.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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