October 23rd, 2008
01:15 PM ET
13 years ago

McCain on Joe the plumber tour

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/21/art.macpt1021.ap.jpg caption="Sen. McCain is on a Joe the plumber tour."]
INTERSTATE 4, Florida (CNN)– Joe the plumber goes on tour?

Well sort of.

Driving through Florida on the "Straight Talk Express," Sen. John McCain rallied voters and talked to small business owners during the "Joe the Plumber: Keep Your Wealth" tour.

“You know whether it is Joe the plumber in Ohio or whether it is Joe over here –thank you Joe. There's Joes all over here,” said McCain at his second stop, a rally in Ormond Beach, Florida. “Senator Obama wants to spread the wealth around. That means fewer jobs at their businesses and fewer jobs here in Florida.”

People cheered as they held signs that said, "McCain will help the working man" and "My husband is Tom the plumber". Two fork lifts held the "Country First" sign above the platform.

McCain kicked off the tour at the Starlite Diner in Daytona Beach with four small business owners, or in campaign speak, four Joe the plumbers.

Their actual names and professions are florist Richard Rivers, pub owner Tom Curtis, food store owner Patricia Surgine and Thomas Crowe, president of a lumber supply company and a former professional football player.

Diners at neighboring tables manned their cell phone cameras as the business owners told McCain their troubles, particularly with Barack Obama's tax plan.

At the morning rally, held at the lumber supply company owned by Crowe, the Arizona Senator got very fired up about two topics: the Bush presidency and his Democratic opponent.

“I call on the Administration to act now and buy up these home loan mortgages and keep people in their homes,” he said as he pounded on the podium. ”And why is the Secretary of the Treasury not ordering them to do that?”

McCain also emphasized concerns about Obama's ability to lead.

“You know it is amazing," he said "Are you ready to trust Americans’ national security to an untested leader in these times of war?”

He also mocked Obama’s explanation of why Democratic VP candidate Joe Biden said his running mate would be tested by an international crisis as president.

“Yesterday Senator Obama tried to explain away this by warning – by saying that his running mate sometimes engages in rhetorical flourishes. Really? Really? That’s another way of saying he accidentally delivered some straight talk to America.”

At his third and fourth stops, he also met with small business owners. The third stop was held at a dentist's office in Altamonte Springs, Florida. Hispanic business owners were targeted at the later stop, a Puerto Rican restaurant in Orlando.

After his meeting, he made a statement to the press corps where he talked about one of the women he spoke with inside the restaurant, noted the new jobless report, and said he was optimistic about his chances in Florida.

“We’re doing well in Florida, I’m happy with the polling numbers. It’s going to be a battleground state, we got a lot of work to do but with Charlie Crist, Mel Martinez and a lot of the great support we have across this state we will win and we will win this election.”

The six stop tour will take the McCain campaign through Florida along the I-4 corridor. This part of the state is home to nearly 20 percent of undecided voters which both campaigns consider the key to Florida’s 27 electoral votes.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. ken

    joe the plumber , this is the same joe, who is not joe it's sam , it should be the sam tour., well lets see , sam, allis joe. he is not a plumber , in ohio you have to have a licence to be a plumber ,joe does not have one , joe is related to mc cains co chairman charles keating , yes that is the same keating tjat almost cost mc cain his senate seat, as one of the keating five fame, they thyed to keep keating from being investigated , but he was and found guilty of fraud and several other felonys, from staeling millions from old poeple, just like today. but sam is related to him . , thats very odd , yet the biggest thing is that joe or sam gave the obama campain a $100.00 donation, how much did he give you john, also he should of used the money to pay his back taxes, thats what i would run on , is it to hard to find a honest man . ken

    October 23, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  2. Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx.

    Here's a little quiz for you. Who said it was a good idea to increase the Earned Income Tax Credit, a credit for low-income workers that reduces the impact of payroll taxes in order to boost take-home pay above poverty levels? That is, When the credit is more than the amount of federal income taxes owed by an individual, that person receives a tax "refund."

    Give up? It was Ronald Reagan himself who praised the earned income tax credit as the best "anti-poverty" and "pro-family" legislation ever enacted by Congress. So, are you now saying Regan is a socialist?

    And how about this one?
    While thinking that repairing the Bush tax cuts, in essence restoring the tax rates back to the levels of the good ole Clinton days, is a bad idea by Obama, it is PRECISELY the same position McCain himself argued when they were first enacted. Is his memory so poor that he cannot remember saying the Bush tax plan was "skewed" to benefit the rich in 2001 and 2003?

    Hey Joe in Ohio, what you say about these facts?

    October 23, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  3. GA Independent

    Each time Obama has something unique to say or has someone say something unique – McCain adopts it – first it was "change" and now it's Joe the Plumber.

    Who is the leader? Who is the follower?

    October 23, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  4. Joseph, Los Angeles

    Did anyone see the full unedited exchange between this "joe" guy and Senator Obama? If you did, this joe the plummer thing would go away. Obama was clear, articulate, and fully explained his plan. Although I think this guy was a republican plant, the look on his face said a mouth full; he agrees with Obama's plan but can't come out publically and say it.

    October 23, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  5. David Goldman for OBAMA




    October 23, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  6. alvino

    As a registered republican, I received a request from Sarah Palin for a donation to the campaign (maybe she needs a new dress), I sent it back empty because I need the money more than the RNC. I have early voted Obama and would like to have the RNC call me when McCain, Palin, Guiliani are gone.

    October 23, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
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