By Samantha Hayes, for NEWS 9
Oct. 30, 2008
WASHINGTON -- John McCain and his running mate, Sarah Palin, talk about "Joe the Plumber" frequently during their campaign rallies. The tall, bald-headed plumber from Toledo, Ohio, has become the embodiment of McCain's closing argument against his opponent. McCain says Obama will raise taxes on small businesses, preventing middle class folks like Joe Wurzelbacher to achieve his image of the American Dream. Wurzelbacher exploded onto the political scene when he told Barack Obama that his tax plan would hurt small business owners. The McCain campaign seized on that exchange and "Joe the Plumber" became a central figure in the last presidential debate a couple weeks ago. Since then, Wurzelbacher is frequently interviewed by network news programs, attends debate rallies with the candidates, and with cameras rolling, recently endorsed McCain's presidential bid.
So it seemed a little strange this morning when in Defiance, Ohio, Joe was a no-show. At the rally, the first of several across the battleground of Ohio today, McCain called out to the crowd asking, "Where's Joe?" Wurzelbacher said the McCain camp called him about coming to the morning rally, but did not call again to confirm. He said he was "not happy" that McCain called attention to his absence by calling out his name but will try to meet up with McCain later in the day.