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Margin can position an element, so applying negative margin will pull the object to that negative position. Padding however doesn’t position an element, it merely creates space around that element, so negative padding would be negative space.
To visualise, imagine you have an image of 100px x 150px, you can’t remove padding from it, it must exist at a minimum of 100px x 150px – you can only add the padding.
Hope that makes sense – I know what I mean anyway lol