October 17th, 2008
12:44 PM ET
14 years ago

Plungers greet Obama at Virginia Rally


From left to right: Will Croswell, of the Washington D.C. area; Andrew Butash, of Scranton, Pennsylvania; Byron Hodkinson, from Melbourne, Austrailia; and Charlie Smith, also from the Washington D.C. area, greeted Sen. Obama in Virginia Friday. (Photo Credit: Sasha Johnson/CNN)

ROANOKE, Virginia (CNN) - The new symbol of the McCain campaign: the plunger.

As Democratic nominee Barack Obama pulled into the Roanoke Civic Center on Friday, he was greeted by the usual McCain campaign supporters that show at Obama rallies. But this time, those waving McCain-Palin signs were joined by dozens of people waving standard-issue plungers. Some wore white t-shirts emblazoned with "I AM JOE THE PLUMBER" on the front. The protesters all said they were volunteers and not paid by the McCain campaign.

The plungers serve as a reference to the 2008 campaign's latest cult personality, Joe "the Plumber" Wurzelbacher of Holland Ohio. (Joe is actually his middle name. First name: Samuel).

While the plungers emerged in Roanoke, McCain's vice presidential running mate Sarah Palin told a fundraiser in neighboring North Carolina Thursday night that she's already tired of "Joe the Plumber."

"Don't make me say Joe the Plumber, please, in any speeches," Palin said.

soundoff (219 Responses)
  1. LT

    Look at these idiots. What a waste of time.

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. MG

    Hey CNN – Perhaps you haven't noticed, but Obama is ahead in the polls, not McCain...why is every single one of your articles today pro-McCain and anti-Obama?

    Trying to follow in Fox news' footsteps of extreme bias? Or are you trying to influence the polls to keep the ratings up?

    ho cares about plungers? How about reporting on the two Obama supporters that were beaten up at a McCain rally yesterday? Or would that tarnish the image you are trying to project for McCain?

    Honestly, with a slogan like no bias no bull, you could at least pretend to keep it fair, even if it is in your corporate interest to see McCain elected.

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  3. jaymzz

    joe the plumber admitted he'd save money under obama tax plan. somebody forgot 2 tell those 3...

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  4. Lady Prof

    More phony plumbers...

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  5. Robert Smith

    Buttcracks for McCain! How revealing...

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  6. Doris,Memphis,TN

    No substance, just gimmicks!

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  7. Eric

    From October 6 through October 15, CNN aired at least 54 segments mentioning allegations that ACORN submitted allegedly false or duplicate voter registration applications this year in a number of states.

    Problem is, CNN failed to mention:

    A) Acorn is obligated by the state law to submit those applications, even if they know they are suspicious.
    B) Registration fraud rarely leads to voter fraud, something CNN does not even differenciate.

    I do not see any ticker about his. 54 times, you badly reported the news. (without suprise, Dobbs is leading the dance.) Are you going to explain this?

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  8. Lee

    A bunch of dummies. "Joe the Plumber" was a Republican plant all along. It kind of fits since he doesn't have a license for plumbing (doesn't believe in regulation) and is a tax cheat where he is being sued on back taxes.
    The only argument left for McCain is that he is not black. Nothing else is left.

    October 17, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  9. Robert Belair

    Joe the plumber has no been shown to be a fake. First of all he has no plumber's license. Secondly hia name is not Joe, its Samuel. Thirdly, he makes far less than the $250,000 dollars a year that McCain used as his tax bracket.
    Nice try John, but you are full of it again.

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  10. Nancy, CA

    The earth must be moving. I can't believe I actually agree with Sarah Palin for once. Give it a rest, folks, and get rid of "Joe the Plummer." Just two minutes into the narrative about him during the debate and I was sick of the whole thing already. Besides, isn't this supposed to be the day of "Jane the Hairstylist."

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  11. Winnie Hussein . . . in Montana

    How ignorant can these fools get? Do they honestly make over $250,000 a year, so that they have a right to be worried about Obama's tax plan? Probably not. Do they really want to align themselves with a man, "Joe the Plumber", who owes back taxes and does not have a plumber's license in violation of statute? Puuuuleeese. Get a grip folks, grow and pair and stop acting juvenile. Not McCain plants? Hmmm.

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  12. Bruce

    McCain brings it up and now Palin is whinning about it...come on ..this lady is a piece of work..and not ready to lead.
    As for the protesters with plungers,,,from the picture I am not sure that any of them ahve the brains to use one..or to handle a simple plumbing job.
    Wake up America....McCain/Palin are loosing it...grasping at anything.

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  13. VON BISMARK,Vienna.


    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  14. NO McCain/Palin

    LOSERS! Go get yourself a job...opps...maybe you are jobless due to Bush/Cheney/McCain/Palin's policies...

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  15. Kiah G

    Just the antics with "hockey moms" they'll be PLENTY of other plumbers who support Obama and not these ignorant yokels voting for a man who could care less about their finances.

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  16. Vincent, Great Lakes, Illinois

    It doesn't take a plumber to know that Obama stinks?

    Hopefully these guys are just taking the day off as opposed to collecting from that socialist Unemployment Compensation progrm.

    October 17, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  17. michael

    "Make you say" Palin? Sounds like you just support America's claim that your nothing but a pretty face reading a script. You're a political tool, a puppet. Granted a good one. But who is gonna be there to tell you what to do if you have to take over? A scripted speech won't "shake up Wahington" and accepting what people "make you say" doesn't make you a maverick.

    October 17, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  18. Steve, Madison WI

    McCain's policies would "plunge" us further into the toilet, so his love of "Joe the Plumber" are certainly appropriate.

    October 17, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  19. Kate - Minneapolis

    Okay media- we get it. You want this to be a close race so there is more "drama" on election day and more for you to cover but seriously, can we stop taking about this (not really a) plumber guy and talk about the issues? McCain has a terrible healthcare plan- can we focus on that?

    October 17, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  20. Karen - It's time for change

    This tells me this kids are not serious about life and what Obama is trying to say... Joe the plumber isn't the only person who has goals but Obama wants us all to get a piece of the pie.

    October 17, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  21. Tanya

    Sarah Palin is suddenly tired of Joe the Plumber because his name is not Joe, he is not licensed as a plumber in Ohio and he owe a lot of unpaid taxes to the state of Ohio already.

    October 17, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  22. obamacan

    Ignorant Joe.

    Joe doesnt doesnt even know that he get a tax cut under Obama's Plan.

    Ignorance is the reason why i voted for Bush and i'm not making the same mistake again.

    October 17, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  23. Paul

    So, the guy's name isn't even Joe.

    He doesn't make $250k/year, and even if he bought a business and did, he most likely still wouldn't be affected by the Obama tax plan.

    And, oh yeah, he's related by marriage to Charles Keating – of the Keating 5 scandal, not exactly a McCain career highlight.

    Is this really the best that the McCain camp could come up with as a rallying cry?

    It's a shame that the John McCain of 2000 seems to be MIA; I would have voted for him.

    October 17, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  24. AD

    Ha. the plunger as a symbol of the McCain campaign. How...appropriate.

    October 17, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  25. PA voter

    I'm just trying to watch which areas of the country McCain and Palin think are "pro-America"...

    October 17, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
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