Those of you who watched Wednesday night’s final presidential debate were, like me, wondering just who this Joe the Plumber guy is and why both John McCain and Barack Obama kept talking about him. Fortunately, Philip Elliot of the Associated Press did all that work for me, so I didn’t have to search too long or too hard to learn about the now-infamous Joe Wurzelbacher of Ohio (full story).
According to the story, Joe the Plumber (who has an uncanny resemblance to Mr. Clean) met Barack Obama at a campaign stop and their meeting left Joe feeling “uneasy” after telling Obama that his taxes on small businesses would keep him from owning the plumbing buisness that he’s worked at for many years. Even though Joe says he agrees with McCain’s plan, he’s ever the diplomat when it comes to divulging who’s won his vote, “That for me and a button to know.” Way to dodge the question, Joe! A tactic he learned to employ expertly from watching the debate.
While Joe may have gotten his questions answered, I’m still in the dark. I don’t own a home, have kids I’m sending to school or college, and I didn’t lose all my money in the stock market. I’m really wondering what either candidate would do for me–a single woman in her late 20’s with a ton of school loans. I did hear Obama say he would give $4K back to students who volunteered, which doesn’t do me a lot of good now. Can I get a $16K credit on my loans for my volunteer service? I was even nominated for an award by my college for my work…too little, too late.
With all this focus on families and economy, I’m beginning to wonder what’s in it for me. I do come from the “me” generation after all. So, where’s my piece of the American Dream? Single adults fall through the cracks yet again. Sigh. Maybe we should elect Joe the Plumber as President.
Edit: There are a lot of videos aimed at “Joe the Plumber” circling around YouTube, many of which are critical of Joe because he is “rich”. I’d like to point out that just because his company makes $250,000 a year or more does not mean that’s what Joe is taking home. Remember, Joe has to pay his other employees, rent and/or maintenance for his business location, the cost of tools/supplies, advertising (so he gets customers), and other business-related expenses. Joe is not “whining” and he’s not rich because his business would make $250K.
Edit 2: Midday Thursday more information about Joe the Plumber has begun to surface. According to several news sources, Joe is actually named Samuel J. Wurzelbacher (he probably goes by his middle name, which is most likely “Joseph”) and he isn’t a licensed plumber–he just works for a guy that is. Plus, Joe/Samuel/Whoever He is owes back taxes to the tune of $1200 (full story). I seriously feel bad for the guy.