Fact-Checking Janice Hahn

Today, the San Francisco Chronicle continues its efforts to fact-check political ads by examining this statement from Lieutenant Governor candidate Janice Hahn:

We can send another ambitious career politician to Sacramento, or Janice Hahn - single mom, councilwoman, businesswoman, schoolteacher for lieutenant governor.

This is the sort of sad, self-hating thing that career politicians have to do because they know that voters hate them. Hahn first ran for office in 1993, back when Gavin Newsom was selling PlumpJack wine. So if it's not a career by now, then what is it. She's also ambitious, obviously, or she wouldn't be running for statewide office. No shame in that.

As the Chronicle puts it: "Hahn may be overstating her outsider status by suggesting she is not a 'career politician.'" Yeah. May be.

The real point of running through that list -- mom, businesswoman, councilwoman -- seems to be to say "woman" over and over again, to underscore what has become Hahn's fundamental argument for herself.

But what makes the ad's politician-bashing remarkable is that Hahn grew up idolizing her father, Supervisor Kenneth Hahn, who was a career politician in the best sense. Now, maybe voters don't know that, but they will if they've been paying attention at all to the first 10 seconds of the ad, which is about how Kenneth Hahn was the only local official to meet Martin Luther King, Jr., at the airport.

And by the way, Janice Hahn hasn't been a schoolteacher since 1978. And as for being a "businesswoman," she worked for some businesses in the 1990s, mostly in public affairs, while she tried to figure out a way to get elected to City Council. Her actual achievements are all in the field of public service.

Own it, sister!


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