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. Obamaniac!


    October 23, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  2. latina for Obama

    Why cant he run a " TRUTH AND HONOR TOUR"?
    Oh that's right cause That One already thought of it!! Duh.

    OBAMA/BIDEN!! 08

    October 23, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  3. Kyle

    So is this the official "Redneck Political Tour"?

    The Straight Talk Express is not about straight talk on the issues but the expression of why Obama isn't American enough.

    October 23, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    mccain get a life

    October 23, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  5. mr canada

    The fact that most Americans are mad with congress and voting against the republicans even though the majority in congress are democratics confirms my feelings on your school system.

    October 23, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  6. Kiah G

    McGimmick strikes again.

    October 23, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  7. KC

    I was a Fl. resident that voted for Gore and my vote DIDNT COUNT! The McCain/Palin ticket frightens me. McCain said he is running an "honorable" campaign, then why are there so many very disturbing comments coming from people at his rallies?? As well as from Palin herself. My friends in Florida that own a Production Co. WILL catch these comments and people on camera. So watch out McCain! We will show America just how "Honorable" your campain is and air the film on CNN and yes FOX! Because divided we ALL fail!

    October 23, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  8. What a JOKE

    Keep my wealth? WHAT wealth? Any wealth Americans had in their homes or the stock market is down the drain. Should I call Joe the Plumber to try to fix my drain? Oh he's not a licensed plumber? Hm.

    October 23, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  9. Hillary Democrat

    I just voted for McCain because I just could not vote for Obama but I will tell everyone that I voted for Obama.

    October 23, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  10. Annemarie

    McCain said it’s no surprise large companies leave the country if they’re being taxed less there; e.g. in Ireland they only pay 11 % taxes. Following his logic, America will have to lower its tax rates for corporations to 11% before they stop flocking to Ireland. In other words, his proposed tax cut – 25 % instead of 35 % – is not going to stop these companies from going overseas.
    Spoken like a true visionary, senator!

    October 23, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. No Country For Old Men

    Seriously, is this race become about a fake plumber who, in actuality, would benefit from Obama than McCain. He's an idiot and so is McCain!

    October 23, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  12. Losers/Liers/Cheaters

    Joe the Plumber does not have a Plumbers License, makes way less than $250K per year, and may not even be registered to Vote. Birds Of the same Feather Flock together: In other words, losers, liers and cheaters like Joe the Plumber are for McSame/Palin who can't except losing and also lie and will no doubt try to cheat come Nov4th.

    October 23, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  13. welches oregon

    “Senator Obama wants to spread the wealth around. That means fewer jobs at their businesses and fewer jobs here in Florida.”

    Either McCain is lying or is completely uninformed.

    J.O.B.S., tax cuts, rich pay their share – that how the "Wealth" will be redistributed and I'm all for it.

    Spread the Wealth – Obama/Biden '08!

    October 23, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  14. Jerry Atrick

    Undecided: I see are one of those who still have issues with elitism even though they are being pointed in the wrong direction. Joe the plumber is a misrepresentation of what McCain, et al are touting. As a matter of fact Joe (whose real name is Sam) is sick and tired of this.

    October 23, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  15. truthsayer

    Joe the tax dodger belongs on the slime talk express

    October 23, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  16. George

    I still don't get this guy...he can't afford to buy the business because if he buys the business he'll make $250,000/year instead of the $40,000/year he's making now? Ummm what? He'll more than quadruple his salary, but the taxes will cripple him....where is the logic in that?

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  17. Rena

    Like the word of God says, "In the last days they will call what is good, bad and what is bad, good."

    You so called christians out there; I have a question for you. Do mccain campaign resemble anything of Christ? Christ does not lie, cheat, bare false witness, use people, commit adultrey, rob the poor, nor does he deceive people, and he most certainly does not promote fear, for his word says that God has not given us a spirit of fear but love, power, and a sound mind.

    So I say again, and quote Paul the Apostle, "Examine yourselves to see if you are of this christain faith, least you be deceived and Christ returns and find you without faith." Will the real christians please stand up? Stop being hypocrites! These were the first people that Jesus target and rebuked, are you one these people?

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  18. Erik

    McCain is sadly basing his last two weeks of campaigning on an Obama comment taken way out of context, and a slew of half-truths and outright fabrications. Long gone is the good man I supported in 2000. This McCain is a disgrace.

    –Erik the Stagehand (a proud American from Real Pennsylvania)

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  19. Librarian for Obama/Biden

    Are they going there to have more "rallies" that feature the county sheriffs on stage in full uniform with gun at their side spewing hate-filled statements about Sen. Obama? Gov. Christ, are you sure you want to attend more of those rallies?

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  20. AllthatMatters

    Wonder where Joe got his Digs and did Palin kick in some Alaskan Dough. Listen folks Joe was a plant and a gimmick and grommed by Carl Rove and his band of snakes. Welcome Stupid America...is what they think we have on our foreheads...Get rid of this Circus Act..Vote Obama/Biden 08 and lets get this Country moving n the right (oops..political Gaff) the correct direction.

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  21. FactCheck

    > Here is the news flash : Larijani: Iran prefers Obama

    A news flash for you: al Queda yesterday endorsed McCain because they know that he will continue the downward economic spiral of this country (which has been their intention all along).

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  22. vince

    joe blow doesnt pay his taxes probly woudnt pay his employes.no disrespect to plumbers but this guys makes everyday workers look dumb and thats the repulicans are hopeing four not going to work this time we learned are lessons with bush everybody needs to get out and vote lets make it a landslide we have the last word

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  23. Ken in Dallas

    Joe the plumber would be a diversion even if he were authentic.

    McCain still thinks status quo economic policy is just fine, because he doesn't understand that the free-market/free-trade policies he practices are the root cause of declining median income levels, which, in turn, are a major cause of mortgage defaults.

    In truth, taxes are not an issue in the economy. The core issue is the erosion of American earning capacity, and McCain thinks deregulation is the way to fix that. A McCain presidency would be an economic catastrophe, because he misunderstands economics in a way frighteningly similar to the way Hoover misunderstood it.

    October 23, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  24. SPQR

    The McCain campaign gets goofier and goofier. Who are they trying to connect with, anyway? It seems they are going out of their way to attact the attention of rural rednecks and conservative radio geeks. I don't believe for a minute that those groups of individuals comprise the majority of the voting population. I heard Todd Palin speak the other day and it was so laughable it was sad. Now this hapless moron who has been caught in his own misstatements so many times it's pitiful. I feel so sorry for John McCain, the John McCain I used to admire. His judgement is so poor now, it's almose as if he's deliberately killing his own campaign.

    October 23, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  25. Carol in Durham, Maine

    Of course he has Joe the plumber tour. HIs Joe doesn't even pay his taxes and so McCain must feel he is a 'role model' for the nation. Because if you DO pay taxes you must be a 'socialist' or wait is the communist?
    People who midlessly vote for these people need to be pitied. Does this nation really want another shallow shoot them up cowboy ?

    My prayer is that Americans won't buy the smear tactics this time and will see through it. We have too many issues.

    October 23, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
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