October 30th, 2008
02:35 PM ET
6 years ago

Joe the no show

 Joe Wurzelbacher did show up to a Palin event Wednesday.
Joe Wurzelbacher did show up to a Palin event Wednesday.

(CNN) - Joe Wurzelbacher, aka Joe the Plumber, has become an integral part of John McCain's presidential bid, but it appears the Arizona senator's campaign and the now-famous Toledo plumber need to work on their communication skills.

McCain aides told CNN's Dana Bash Wurzelbacher would appear with the Republican presidential candidate at his first campaign event in Defiance, Ohio. But in what was a slightly awkward moment for McCain, Wurzelbacher was nowhere to be seen when the Arizona senator called out for him.

Read Dana Bash's first person account of the mix up on AC360 blog

A campaign aide later said Wurzelbacher had "decided not to come" and may join McCain later in the day.

But reached at his home by CNN's Mary Snow, Wurzelbacher said it was "news to him" that he was supposed to be at the McCain rally. Wurzelbacher said nobody from the McCain campaign confirmed he was attending the event and called the incident a "miscommunication."

Wurzelbacher also said he is headed to Philadelphia for a charity event unrelated to the campaign and has no plans to meet up with McCain today.

UPDATE: Contacted by CNN a second time, Wurzelbacher said the campaign only called him to confirm after the event in question already took place.  He will now try to meet up with McCain later in the day.

Watch: 'Joe': McCain 'a real American'

Wurzelbacher also said he had gotten an initial call about coming to the morning rally, "but no one called back to confirm," and was "not happy" that McCain had called out his name and he wasn't there.


Filed under: Joe the plumber • John McCain
soundoff (511 Responses)
  1. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    Another deserter. Ha ha. John sang like a bird in Viet Name (failed that test, didn't he?) Now maybe he will whine about joe the plumber deserting. Wait – don't rats desert a sinking ship?

    Obama/Biden '08 – the guys that will protect ALL of our Constitutional Rights !!!!!

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  2. Catherine

    McCain stop beating a dead horse "Joe the Plumber" is a fraud and is now using you for his stepping stone...just like Palin.

    McCain your campaign strategies have been a complete failure!!!!

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  3. Pete the Programmer

    I didn't show up either, why am I not in the news?

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  4. Mike

    cnn is constantly just reporting negative things about McCain.
    What about Obama's slip in the polls? Where is your poll of polls now?

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  5. Repub 4 Obama

    another failed promise

    just like bush

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  6. Kenneth

    LOL.
    "My friends, here is Joe the Plumber!"
    **Waits**
    **Cries**

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  7. McCrazy

    This is what happens when you hang your political future on a fake plumber.

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  8. Independent

    Ha Ha Ha ... does McCain know ANYTHING that is going on in his campaign ? Is it actually HIS campaign ?

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  9. Robert

    I dont think that Joe the Plumber is a McCAIN supporter,that is why he is refusing to appear at any of his rally.

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  10. MARC

    Does this guy even have a job?

    October 30, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  11. travis

    LOL. McCain campaign is a bad joke!

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  12. Joseph

    Priceless.

    Such a well-managed campaign. Imagine such organization (and reliance on such wonderful "symbols") when leading the nation.

    Vote for competence. Vote for Obama.

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  13. What's a VP's job? Ask a 3rd grader!

    Joe, it appears your 15 minutes of fame are up. John, it appears your fame is also fleeting.

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  14. Tony

    I feel sorry for the guy as he is going to be dropped by the Republicans like a hot potato next week. No wonder he is now trying to get a recording deal before the spotlight shuts off.

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  15. SoCal

    It appears Joe The Plumber is always there at home ready for the next interview...

    Does he ever do any plumbing work at all?

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  16. paulaa

    Could the MCain campaign get any worse.......what a joke! This should give everyone an idea of how McCain would run the nation. It's sad, that after all he has done, history will remember him for this pathetic campaign. I haven't seen this much hate and divisiveness since the race riots in the 60's......a sad legacy for McCain to leave behind. We need to go forward, not backward. America NEEDS Obama, especially after what the McCain campaign has done. We need to UNITE to move forward.

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  17. Ally

    Embarrasing. Sounds like the entire campaign communication strategy.

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  18. Abdul

    By speaking publically, Joe is asking to be vetted, questioned, examined, yada yada yada....
    "Joe the Plummer didn't ask to be made famous! Give him a big round of applause! Now leave him alone!!"

    October 30, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  19. Sacto Joe

    This guy is giving all us REAL working Joe's a bad name. But that's all right – he's also showing up McCain for the phony he is as well!

    GOBAMA!

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  20. JIM HAWK

    Just shows you how out of touch mccain is..Also,tell Joe the plumber
    I'll trade him my PENN STATE HODDIE FOR HIS OHIO STATE HODDIE..If you can't beat us joe..join us..PENN STATE FOR OBAMA !!

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  21. Ain't buying it....

    Anybody out there know any plumbers who have publicists and are looking to do a country music album?

    I sure don't.....

    John McCain is getting pimped by this Joe the Plumber fraud yet he keeps on bringing him up day after day after day.....

    If McCain is so easily conned by a plumber what do you think Putin would do to him?

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  22. Greg in MN

    So Joe is tossing McCain under the bus is what I get out of this.

    Or McCain is so lousy at planning things, that he can't get a plumber to come to his events even. How is going to get things done in the White House?

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  23. SPT NYC

    Joe is in the tank for the socialist! Say it ain't so, etc.

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  24. sglman4Obama

    This is so funny, another misstep by Grampa McCain and Madame Moose. Maybe Joe Sixpack will come out to one of the rallies or Wally the White Supremeist they seem to be showing up in droves.

    Makes you wonder, has anyone seen blacks at any McCain or Palin rallies? Hmmmmm

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  25. Vegas Barbie for Obama

    Joe's pissed because Sarah Palin threw him under the bus for Tito the Builder at a recent event. A plumber's revenge.

    October 30, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
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