They work when the right words are chosen for the targeted (dumb and emotional) ear.
I believe only in people with good track records and a plan detailing what they, the political hopeful, intend to do and how they intend to realise their plans.
Placing their cards on the table.
It's all about a plan and the realistic financing thereof.
If those two factors add up then I go with it.
Mudslinging is no plan. It's just a cheap way for incompetent people with unsavory (hidden) plans to get into an office where they do not belong an are unfit to run.