Senate candidate Hannah-Beth Jackson has done what some say she should have done in her campaign four years: Do something to directly counter the sophomoric "Taxin' Jackson" nickname that her opponent spent millions to get voters to associate with her.
It was so catchy, that workers in the campaign of her 2008 opponent, Tony Strickland, claim when they precinct walking in Santa Barbara days before the election, on Oct. 31, they encountered a mother walking her little girl out the door about to go trick-or-treating. The mother proudly told them her daughter was customed as Taxin' Jackson.
Four years later, Republican 19th Senate District candidate Mike Stoker is again refering to the former Democratic assemblywoman as "Taxin' Jackson" at every opportunity.
I asked Jackson about that nickname last week, and she insists that it stuck only because "it rhymes and it has a beat." She lamented that it would never have become an issue had she taken the name of her husband, George Eskin, when they married. "I should have listened to my mother," she said.
That's a bell that can't be unrung, however. What can be done is to launch a counterattack, which is what Jackson has done in a new commercial (it's the second one in a two-commercial set). The ad is called "Action Jackson." Although it is very tacky, slowing Jackson in sports attire competing in a race while fighting off "special interests," depicted as gentlemen wearing paper bags over their heads, the ad serves its apparent purpose: It gets another rhyming nickname into the public sphere so that when casual voters won't simply associate her name with the word 'taxin'.'
It is a shame that serious campaigns for serious offices so often come down to silly stuff like this.,