As acknowledged by a number of commentators, the 2018 Victorian state election has shown that you cannot fool the electorate all the time, where the voters demonstrated their intelligence by not being swayed by divisive politics and voted based on performance by political parties.
The first-term incumbent Labor government, led by Premier Daniel Andrews, won a second four-year term, defeating the Liberal/NationalCoalition opposition by an overwhelming majority.
Labor won 55 seats in the 88-seat Legislative Assembly, enough to comfortably secure majority government status. The Liberal/National Coalition could only scrap to get 37 seats.
The negative campaigning by the Liberal party especially by the federal leadership of using racial and divisive slogans backfired absolutely.
Demonising minorities is an age-old tactic followed by unscrupulous leaders to gain popularity among the majority.
In recent history, this very tactic was used by the Nazis targeting their Jewish minority subjecting millions to the Holocaust and starting a world war rousing racial hatred that resulted in the killing of tens of millions of people.
The communist regime in the Soviet Union treated minorities very badly, killing millions and displacing tens of millions in the process.
Muslims in the west of China are facing one of the worst examples of oppression and ethnic cleansing in the world today.
East Turkestan, that Chinese call Xinjiang, the home of the Muslim minority known as the Uyghurs, has seen the mass-internment of two million civilians who face physical and mental torture until they renounce their faith.
The Chinese government calls these camps “re-education camps” that amount to mass prison camps.
These tactics have not only been used by dictators and authoritarian regimes, but also in democratic societies.
President Trump managed to get elected by inciting the majority community by demonising minorities and creating fear in the electorate.
The Hindu Nationalist party BJP led by Prime Minister Modi has been using the same tactics by inciting Hindus against the Muslim minority, increasingly now preparing for national elections early next year in India.
Far Right parties in Europe have gained a substantial foothold amongst the majority population based on incitement to hatred against their minorities.
The Liberal party has used these tactics in the past during John Howard’s era as it seems that the current federal leadership of the party is employing the same strategy.
However the results of the Victorian state elections should be a warning to the Liberal machinery that negative politics by creating an atmosphere of blame and hate does not bear fruits and Australians will be voting on the basis of sound policies and for parties who are willing to tackle important issues facing the country in a positive way.