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. rivermede

    WOW great to find this site full of brain dead socialists. Obama is a communist with a litte "c" who will do great damage to this country. He has no history, no accomplishments, a true Mancurian Candidate. You all need to look at what you are doing.

    Palin has more experience than O, and loves this country unlike him. Wake up look at who he is.

    October 17, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  2. Erika, KS

    Right wing shill? How about left wing loon? That's what all of you Obamabots are. You don't even make sense. Wait and see who comes out of the woodwork to vote AGAINST Obama.

    October 17, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  3. MN

    Those four look really smart.

    So Joe (whose name is Sam) the Plumber (who isn't a plumber) was used by McCain to attack Obama's tax proposal, though Joe/Sam actually pays less tax under Obama (if he actually got around to paying his taxes.) That's right... seems that Joe/Sam the plumber owes some back taxes...

    Is this average, model American citizen a tax cheat? Oops.

    It seems that they would want to choose an upstanding citizen as their blue collar icon instead of this Joe/Sam guy...

    October 17, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  4. Brian

    Do these guys even get that the debate isn't about plumbers? The debate is about guys who make $250,000 or more a year.

    I guess they don't get that... BECAUSE THEY'RE PLUMBERS!!!

    October 17, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |

    McCain needs these guys because he, Palin and his entire campaign are really starting to stink.


    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  6. John

    Spin this one Lou Dobbs you are about as up front as this guy Joe the plumber which he aint and Dobbs you are a gutless idiot who through fear of ridicule did not stand as a candidate in this election, Nuff said

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  7. Chris

    Oh Please. "I am Joe The Plumber" t-shirts. Really. So, what you are saying is you are a lying, republican plant who doesn't pay his taxes or even have a plumbing license. Not something I would be advertising.

    Joe the plumber has been debunked as a fraud and so are these people.

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  8. dittohead with forty names

    These are my dear friends,we all sit in my cellar all day and think of ways to get on TV and help Rush Limbaugh spread more lies and vile hate.

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  9. Karlie

    ha ha they're cute!

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  10. CyrusFromFlorida

    Now are these Plungers making more than 250K/year? I have my doubts...

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |

    Plumb the ignorance out of your heads. And the hate out of your hearts. Don't vote against your childrens future just because you cant move one and join us in the 21st century. 1962 was a long time ago. Move on.

    October 17, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  12. Cathy

    It's to bad Obama didn't stop and talk to the M/P supporters and see if they make $250K a year....considering Joe Wurzelbacher only makes in the $40's and his boss only makes in the $100's....Joe and his boss would be better off under Obama's tax plan.

    McCain vetted Wurzelbacher just like Palin...HE DIDN'T!!!! Wurzelbacher can't even pay his own personal taxes an he is thinking about buying a company...ya right!!!! In a way, I feel sorry for Wurzelbacher because his whole adult life will now be dissected by the public.

    So far we know he has no plumbing license, has a lien against him for back taxes, same name as a relative to Keating 5 (but no relation), what next...cheated on his wife.

    October 17, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  13. Bitter in Texas

    Hummmm...let them protest as long as the mind their manners. For those of you adictided to polls (and I mean real day to day pills) not CNN's "Poll of Poll" TRY...Pollesters.Com...

    October 17, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  14. rm

    They all are probably unemployed and I hope they don't think McCain and Palin give a rat's behind about them. Poor things.

    October 17, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  15. facts are facts

    Why would anyone be concerned over GOP bloggers or protesters it is a known fact they are beung paid to do it................it's their job.

    October 17, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  16. Ohio, Pennsylvania and the rest....


    October 17, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  17. Teddy

    I believe it will still be a close election. Obama will not win by a landslide. Obama will possibly win by around 3%. But he could lose too.

    I hope Obama can win by a small margin. Maybe Americans need a fresh start with Democrats. Even though we will pay more taxes under Obama. My wife has decided to vote for him and I will likely not vote against him.

    But if Obama wins by a landslide, Democrats will sense a mandate for much bigger governments. Obama repeately said he would only raise taxes only for families with over $250,000 (actually, $210,000). But do you really believe in the campain slogan? How many positions has he changed during past several months? With a landslide win, Democrats will get a mandate. There is no way the tax increases will only be for folks with over $250,000 (my family is in the bracket, and I hope we will still be there during the economic downturn). But if Obama wins by a very small margin, then he will be restrained to raise taxes.

    We may want a fresh start with Democrats and a very different President from history. But I do not like a landslide win for Democrats. How many social programs have been established after Democratic landslide win in 1964? That was the last landslide win by Democrats.

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  18. ann in boston

    So let's see who McCain/Palin talk to: hockey moms, joe six pack, joe the plumber, and yesterday in Maine, the dimwit was excited because Maine reminded her of home with 'all the Carharts and steel toe work boots'.

    Do their supporters even realize they talk down to them? I have yet to hear either of them address business moms, joe educator, or nurses wearing scrubs. Seems pretty divided to me and sad that they have targeted such a small segment of people worth talking to.

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  19. The Irony

    These poor folks don't even know that they would be better off in an Obama administration. That's the price to pay for a lack of education and attention to the issues.

    Even "Joe the Plumber", when things were explained to him, admitted that he would be better off tax-wise under Obama. However, he has his own reasons for not publicly backing Obama. Joe's comparing Obama to Sammy Davis Jr. might provide a clue. Here are some other clues:

    – He's not even a licensed plumber
    – He makes no way near $250K
    – He's a registered Republican
    – He's from Arizona

    Hmm.....Am I the only one that finds this too convenient?

    He might be a plant/mole just like the other McCain-Pail protesters.

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  20. Joe the Techie

    Obama is not able to send out his message properly, I think. He is getting pounded McCain/Palin's gimmicks. He is cutting more taxes for more people than McCain.
    Why is it so hard to understand?

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  21. doubleu

    It not about Joe the plumber. It's about the answer from Obama, showing his true socialist stripes. His tax "cuts" for 95% is also bogus as it includes givebacks to people who don't pay taxes.
    As for the "fairness doctrine", it great how you wan't to shut up people with whom you disagree and then call THEM the fascists. Please look up fascist in the dictionary. Argue or discuss the issue of the question, "Wealth redistribution" not the questioner.

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  22. Joe Small Business Owner

    Hey you smug Marxisits: flush your job goodbye under Obama!

    Signed, a small business owner with PLANS TO LAY YOU OFF ON JAN. 1, 2009

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  23. Catherine

    Yet another misstep by McCain campaign managers: voting public now notified that Joe the Plumber is an impostor! Said imposter is actually Sam the Ain't No Plumber Lyin' Income Tax Deadbeat, aka "Sam the Liar". Public perception is Sam the Liar was a "plant" by the McCain campaign.

    Memo to McCain:
    True hard-working, tax paying independent and conservative democrat voters believe they were deceived by both the McCain campaign and Sam the Liar. Strongly advise vetting of all future "plants".

    Word of the Day: vetting
    v. vetting: to appraise, verify, or check for accuracy, authenticity, validity, etc.

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  24. USAF Staff Sergeant

    I don't think these fools quite understand. Since it looks like none of them make over $250k, they would be better off under Obama's plan. It looks to me like they just need a job.

    Come by my office, gentlemen. I can set you up with a great job! Travel the world, meet interesting people, serve your country........

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  25. TNR

    Eight Is Truly Enough, who through a rock through a window at a McCain office in PA? was it the Obama Brownshirts? The same ones trying to destroy Joe the Plumber for asking a legit question

    October 17, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
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