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Published: Wednesday, 5/23/2012

Wurzelbacher objects to Biden “plumber” remark


Samuel “Joe the Plumber” Wurzelbacher has hit back at what he perceived as a knock on plumbers by Vice President Joe Biden.

Campaigning in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Mr. Biden, a Democrat, said a private equity manager was no more qualified to be a president than a plumber.

Mitt Romney, the Republican presumptive candidate against Democrat President Barack Obama, co-founded and ran headed Bain Capital.

Springfield Township resident and congressional candidate Mr. Wurzelbacher labeled Mr. Biden’s comments “elitism.”

“Since when is it Joe Biden’s job to tell the American people who is and isn’t qualified to be President,” said Mr. Wurzelbacher, who is running for Congress in Ohio’s 9th District against incumbent Democrat Marcy Kaptur of Toledo.

“This type of elitism and class warfare are the reasons why I’ve gotten into this campaign. Instead of demeaning the workers who built our country, I’m going to stand up for all the blue collar voters and regular folks who feel left behind by political elitism and divisive politics,” Mr. Wurzelbacher said.

Mr. Biden was speaking at a campaign event at Keene State College in New Hampshire.

“Your job as president is to promote the common good. That doesn’t mean the private equity guys are bad guys. They are not,” Mr. Biden said. “But that no more qualifies you to be president than being a plumber. And, by the way, there are a lot of awful smart plumbers.”

Democrats have hit Mr. Romney’s leadership of Bain, citing instances in which the firm bought businesses and left them in bankruptcy. The Romney campaign has cited Mr. Romney’s success at helping struggling companies recover and create new jobs.

Mr. Wurzelbacher worked as a plumber in the Air Force and for a local contractor, and has been known as “Joe the Plumber” since he engaged in an impromptu debate with then-presidential candidate Barack Obama in October, 2008. His objections to Mr. Obama’s plans to raise taxes on individual incomes over $250,000 were cited repeatedly several days later in a national debate by Republican candidate John McCain.

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