State Senate candidate’s wife says her husband won’t debate opponent — but she sorta does

Marilyn Jackson, wife of Republican state Senate District 27 nominee Ed Jackson, stood in for her husband at a candidate forum and declared he’s not inclined to debate his Democratic opponent, reports the Jackson Sun.

One of the first questions she fielded after her allotted three minutes came from Randy Lamb, the Democratic nominee from Alamo, who asked if Ed Jackson would agree to a debate at Union University.

“It depends on his schedule,” Marilyn said.

“I’m willing to go where he is,” Lamb said.

“He’s not standing around waiting (for) you,” Marilyn said. “He’s working hard to gain attention for himself, not to give you the attention he’s worked for.”

Both candidates continue to work Madison, Crockett, Dyer, Lauderdale and Lake counties with hopes of succeeding retiring state Sen. Lowe Finney.

After the meeting, Lamb said that like himself, Ed Jackson cares about crime and jobs, but Lamb criticized Gov. Bill Haslam and his administration for not expanding Medicaid in Tennessee.

“If I offered you a free car for three years, would you take it?” Lamb asked. “You spend your money where your priorities are.”

Marilyn Jackson said her husband’s position on Medicaid is that it should not be expanded in Tennessee, considering the way the law is structured.

“He just wants to make sure the federal government pays for it, and they are not guaranteeing that,” she said. “We don’t want to go bankrupt like Illinois and California. We are so much better off than other states.”

While Medicaid was not the only issue discussed, both Lamb and Marilyn Jackson weighed in one final time about the possibility of a debate.

“I can ask (Ed Jackson) questions, and he can ask me questions,” Lamb said. “Let the constituents see how the candidates will respond. I would love for the constituents to see us together.”

Marilyn Jackson said she understands why Lamb wants a debate.

“It sends a big sign to us, yes, the one who wants a debate is running scared,” Marilyn Jackson said. “Ed is on the campaign trail, and he would say the very same thing.”