During the years she served in the Assembly, it was no secret in the Capitol that Hannah-Beth Jackson and then-Senate leader John Burton, now chairman of the California Democratic Party, were not exactly cozy. In fact, many observers believe that Burton intentionally put together a Senate redistricting plan in 2001 that left Jackson without a realistic chance to move up to the Senate.
The effectiveness of that plan was validated in 2008 when Democrat Jackson ran and narrowly lost in the Republican-friendly district that Burton blessed for Santa Barbara and most of Ventura County in 2001.
But now a decade has passed, Jackson's Santa Barbara home is in a new, Democrat-friendly district, and she was elected to the Senate last fall.
So there was some unstated tension on Wednesday when Burton stood along the wall to observe the Rules Committee confirmation hearing on the appointment of his daughter, Kimiko Burton, to the State Personnel Board. Jackson is one of five members of the Senate Rules Committee.
Jackson had nothing but kind things to say about Kimiko Burton, and thanked her for having dropped by her office earlier for what Jackson said had been a very pleasant conversation. "It's obvious where you got your charm," Jackson said.
It was abundantly clear what Jackson was saying: that Kimiko's charm must have come from her mother's side.
The committee unanimously recommended that Kimiko Burton be confirmed.