A Republican candidate in Orange County, California has sent out an unusual flier days ahead of the mid-term elections: A brochure made to look like a scratch-and-sniff ad for a perfume.

But scratch the ad, and you won't get a scent of perfume. Instead, you'll be hit with the foul odor of garbage.

"Something smells rotten about Loretta," declares the ad targeting Loretta Sanchez, the Democratic incumbent in California's 47th district. "It's the stench of Washington."

The ad, created by Axiom Strategies, was put out this week by the campaign of Van Tran, the Republican challenger. The Orange County Register reports:

The Sanchez campaign wasn't amused.

Campaign spokeswoman Caroline Hogan called the mailer a gimmick and said in an e-mail, "Talk about bad taste. While our opponent is busy spamming voters with ill-smelling mailers, Rep. Sanchez is talking about the issues that matter to Orange County families."

"It is a horrible odor – like a combination of five or six of the worst possible scents you can imagine," a reader told the Fresno Bee.

The Register points out that the Republican candidate for governor of New York, Carl Paladino, sent out a similar flier earlier this year, that one designed to smell like a landfill.

The race between Sanchez and Tran has gained national media attention before. Last month, Sanchez angered some by declaring that "the Vietnamese and the Republicans are --with an intensity -- trying to take away this seat."

Van Tran, who is of Vietnamese descent and is running against Sanchez in a district with a large Vietnamese population, called Sanchez's remarks "offensive" and "divisive."