If you watched the final presidential debate this past week, you were introduced to Joe the Plumber. Joe is a real guy. Joe approached Sen. Obama on the campaign trail in Toledo, Ohio last Sunday and asked how his tax plan would affect him and other small businesses.
Joe talked about a business he was in and was going to purchase. He was concerned that President Obama's tax plan would hurt his bottom line. Fortunately, Obama didn't say something foolish like "it's patriotic to pay taxes". Obama dealt with the question on the stump but it was Sen. McCain that made Joe a household name.
Joe wasn't quite up front with Obama.
First of all he said he was going to purchase a business. His current employer's business. WRONG. The business is not for sale according to the owner. And how is he going to buy the business, even if it was for sale, on a salary of $40,000?
Second, he gave Obama the gross income of the business at around $250,000. WRONG. The owner claims that's about double of last years' receipts.
Third, Joe the Plumber is a misnomer. Why? Joe's not even a licensed plumber.
Fourth, Joe probably would have additional problems when folks find out that there is a 2007 lien against him for $1,000 for, drum roll please, not paying his taxes.
Well, Joe got his 15 minutes or so of fame. After over 20 mentions of Joe in the debate, everyone was talking Joe the Plumber. The next day, John McCain said that the real winner in last night's debate "Joe the Plumber".
If McCain really thinks Joe was the winner in the debate, with all the falsehoods that have surfaced, McCain is in trouble.
What we can hope the real winner of the campaign when it concludes on November 4th, is the American people.
But I have to wonder if that's possible.