4. Absolutely. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, our side doesn't do it.
Of course, the GOP continues the practice, although things have gotten more sophisticated.
In 1988, Pruneface Reagan, on behalf of Poppy and Potatoeboy, gave his thoughts on Michael Dukakis seeking psychological treatment after Dukakis' brother was killed in a hit-and-run accident. "I'm not going to pick on an invalid," Reagan said, and then smiled and winked at someone in the crowd where he said it. At the time, Duke had the lead in the polls. For some reason, Willie Horton and Boston Harbor included, it steadily diminished thereafter.
'Those of us who had worked for the Kennedy election were tolerated in the government for that reason and had a say, but foreign policy was still with the Council on Foreign Relations people.' -- J.K. Galbraith