Joe Wurzelbacher, whom Americans would remember as “Joe the Plumber” from the 2008 presidential election, died on Sunday at the age of 49 from pancreatic cancer.
Wurzelbacher became a household name during the 2008 presidential election when the media dubbed him “Joe the Plumber” after he questioned then-presidential candidate Barack Obama about his tax policy.
The John McCain campaign then utilized Obama’s final comment about “spreading the wealth around” in a major attack ad, which then prompted several journalists to write up several hit pieces questioning Joe’s plumbing credentials and tax payment history. In 2016, Wurzelbacher endorsed then-candidate Donald Trump in an op-ed for Breitbart News.
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Wurzelbacher ran for the US House in 2012 on an anti-tax and anti-gun control platform and blamed the Holocaust on “gun confiscation.” He lost the general election by 50 points. Wurzelbacher last appeared here in 2013 for this quote:
Wanting a white Republican president doesn’t make you racist, it just makes you American. In the pre-black president era, criticizing the president was simply the American thing to do. An exercise of one’s First Amendment right.
Criticism had nothing to do with color, because there had never been a black president, or at least one whom people recognized as black. So to criticize the president meant that you didn’t like his policies.
The election of a recognized black president was not supposed to change anything. In fact, it was supposed to (1) ease any perceived racial tensions, and (2) allow the government to focus on legislating without race.
So America would be more free than ever to discuss the issues. Not the case. And that is why having a white Republican president is best for the country.
Wurzelbacher, a veteran, was treated at a VA hospital in Michigan. A fundraiser on the far-right Christian site GiveSendGo has raised $131,7455 at this writing.
One thing I’ll always remember about Joe the Plumber: he once wrote a letter to the grieving families of a mass murder to denounce their pro gun control advocacy by saying “your dead kids don’t trump my Constitutional rights.” https://t.co/yDD4Xxkts1 pic.twitter.com/Eq9Qq0RXTD
— velodus.bsky.social 🟦☁️ (@velodus) August 28, 2023