RUSH: I went back, because I remembered something. This past summer, Gallup put out a poll, McCain needs to hammer this. It was June 27th, headline: "Americans oppose income redistribution to fix economy," by 84-13%. Hello, Joe the Plumber. "When given a choice about how government should address the numerous economic difficulties facing today's consumer, Americans overwhelmingly, 84-13, prefer that government focus on improving overall economic conditions and the job situation in the country as opposed to taking steps to distribute wealth more evenly among Americans. Eighty-four to 13. This is back in June. Now, granted, gas prices were very high in June. The economy and the Wall Street mess had not yet come to the fore. It was effervescing out there. We hadn't gotten to the point where we're panicking and talking about bailouts. And in another portion of the same -- this is Gallup, now -- "Half of Americans think government is doing too much, not too little." This is the Joe the Plumber lesson.
The Joe the Plumber lesson is not who he is and not what he said. The lesson is what Obama said. But now the Drive-Bys have to go out and destroy Joe the Plumber. As I asked yesterday, how many Joe the Plumbers, Joe Six-Packs and Josephine the Plumbers are there? They are doing everything they can, the Obama campaign staff, the Drive-By Media, to destroy Joe the Plumber, and he's having some hard economic times right now like a lot of people are. They're even saying he's got this fantasy of owning a business. He's got a fantasy, as though that's not possible, who is this guy, thinking he's going to own a plumbing business. The plumber's union yesterday dumping all over Joe the Plumber about the fact he doesn't have a license or what have you. The fact is he is a plumber and he can work. They're doing everything they can to destroy this guy. What is this fantasy business? He has a fantasy. Fantasies are unrealistic, are they not? That's why they're called fantasies. Dreams are what he has, that's right, he has a dream and they're calling his dream a fantasy. I hope people are noticing what this Obama campaign is willing to do in order to win. It's a page right out of the Clinton book. You destroy anybody, including average Americans you claim to have formulated your economic plans to help.
Remember all the women in the Clinton administration, trailer park trash, the whole bimbo eruptions unit to destroy them. Obama's got the same thing here. Twenty-four hours, the Drive-By Media can unearth everything there is about Joe the Plumber. In two years we can't even get them interested in finding out who the real Obama is. In all these years, they have no interest with all this controversy about Bill Ayers, they have no desire to talk to him. They're not camping outside Bill Ayers' door and demanding he conduct a press conference and answer inquisitive, threatening, intimidating questions. So the die is cast, ladies and gentlemen.
RUSH: Let's go to a montage we have here of Drive-By Media trashing Joe the Plumber.
BRIAN WILLIAMS: (dramatic music) What do we know about this plumber named Joe?
JOHN BERMAN: It doesn't actually appear he's a licensed plumber, and, it does appear there are some issues about past taxes. There are records of a tax lean filed against Joe!
WYATT ANDREWS: The man whose personal story steered a presidential debate over taxes, owes some $1,200 in back taxes.
DAVID "RODHAM" GERGEN: When we found out he was Sam the Non-plumber, it changed a little bit. (snicker) Why the McCain team didn't vet the guy...
ROLAND MARTIN: Joe, you know, the fake plumber...
ANDERSON COOPER: Joe is not actually a licensed plumber. He admits he's not making anywhere close to a quarter million. His name is actually not Joe; at least that's not his first name. His name is Sam: Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher.
CHRISTOPHER HAYES: There's this tremendous gap between the mythical creature of Joe the Plumber and the actual real-life guy, and we see this time and time again. Sarah Palin is a perfect example.
RUSH: These people just can't stand it because Joe the Plumber caused Obama to screw up. Joe the Plumber caused Obama to actually give it up on what his campaign is really all about. You want to talk about past taxes and leans, Charlie Rangel? Does that name come to mind? Does it ring a bell? The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee had to pay back taxes; was trying to cheat the government out of some money on some property he owns down in the Dominican Republic. There's also a guy named Martin Nesbitt, the treasurer of Obama's campaign, who has tax leans. His name isn't Joe? Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher; his name not Joe? Who is this guy? We have to find out who is this guy? This mythical creature? He's a far more real human being than any of the elitists in New York and Washington. Here is Joy Behar from The View this morning.
BEHAR: Joe the Plumber doesn't have a business yet. He's fantasizing about a business he's going to have.
BEHAR: Well, he's thinking about it.
HASSELBECK: This is a man trying to --
BEHAR: Fantasizing is --
HASSELBECK: -- realize his hard work.
BEHAR: Excuse me, fantasizing is --
HASSELBECK: This is his reality.
BEHAR: Wait a second. Fantasizing is a very legitimate term to describe somebody who's predicting the future for themselves.
HASSELBECK: Does fantasizing...? When you fantasize --
BEHAR: Creative visualization, okay?
HASSELBECK: Fantasizing is a dangerous thing to say because it assumes that it is not attainable.
RUSH: They're just doing everything they can to destroy the poor guy. Kathleen Hall Jamieson, do we have time? Barely. Last night on The NewsHour.
JAMIESON: Joe the Plumber also set up a very concrete example that both campaigns could now play through in the following days. Senator Obama hasn't specified when people are going to be paying a fine, how many people have to be in a business to call it "a small business," how much dollar amount does the business have to have to be classified small business. So when Senator Obama says, "Well, small businesses are exempted, Joe, don't worry." The fact checkers and news people are now saying, "But, Senator Obama, you haven't specified what constitutes a small business." That may actually advance this dialogue. So Joe has made concrete very abstract proposals, and as a result I think he's advanced this precedent very importantly.
RUSH: And we'll take a brief time-out here, folks, come right back. Stay with us.
RUSH: Stay focused on this whole business of Joe the Plumber. It's not about Joe the Plumber. I don't care if Joe the Plumber landed from Mars and was impersonating a human being and if Karl Rove did set it up six months ago that Obama was going to go to this house and a Republican would answer. This is what the left is saying, by the way. The left is saying that Joe the Plumber is a plant and that they're uncovering a fraud. They are saying it! This is what they say: Joe the Plumber was a plant. Somebody, Karl Rove, brilliantly arranged all this -- including the house that Obama was going to knock on, in the town where Obama was going to be, on the specific date and time, Rove knew it months ago, where Obama was going to be and arranged all this. Joe the Plumber could be a squirrel! It's what Obama said. Let's go back, this is Sunday in Toledo, and let's listen to the original exchange.
WURZELBACHER: I'm getting ready to buy a company --
WURZELBACHER: -- that makes about 250, 270, eighty thousand dollars a year.
OBAMA: All right.
WURZELBACHER: Your new tax plan is going to tax me more, isn't it?
OBAMA: You get a 50% tax credit, so you get the cut of taxes through your health care plan.
OBAMA: So you would actually get a tax cut on that point. If your revenue is above 250, then from 250 down, your tax is going to stay the same; 95% of small businesses make less than 250.
RUSH: Not true.
OBAMA: What I'm saying is the folks who make more than 250, that that marginal amount above 250 they're gonna be taxed at a 39% instead of 36% rate. I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody.
RUSH: "I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody." Now, the Democrats are very worried about this, despite their public protestations, otherwise they won't be out trying to destroy Joe. I just heard Roger Simon on the television during the break say, "His name is not even Joe! It's Sam." No, it's Samuel Joseph. A lot of people go by their middle name. It's just petty, and it's striking. They're out to destroy one of you; one of us, average Americans, who happened to expose the truth about little Barry: the man-child known as The Messiah. He's filled with lies here. "Ninety-five percent of small businesses make less than 250"? Somebody needs to demand that he prove that. We have the figures from the Small Business Association and the Census Bureau. We shared them with you last week. There's no way. He's not even defining revenue. We don't know if it's gross; we don't know if it's net. Is he including inventories in this? He doesn't know what he's talking about.
That 250 figure is just his magic figure. Now they have to say, "Well, Joe didn't open the business. Even if he bought the business, the business would not be in the 250 or above range." He wants it to be! We're talking about somebody's dream here. "Well, he's got tax leans." So does Charlie Rangel. So does one of the chief treasurers of Obama; a lot of people have tax leans. A lot of people are in debt. You want to punish all of them? You want to say they're all discredited from having a political opinion about a political contest because they're in debt? How many of us are going to be disqualified if they allow that? This next one is popularity. This is Obama yesterday. Everybody talks about, "Why is McCain in this state and that state? That state's lost. Why didn't he go down to Florida? Why doesn't he go back to Ohio?" What is Obama doing in New Hampshire? Why the hell is Obama in New Hampshire? That ought to be in the bag. He was in Londonderry yesterday speaking in an apple orchard, and he brought up the plumber himself. Listen to this.
OBAMA: He's trying to suggest that -- that -- that a plumber is the guy he's fightin' for. How many plumbers do you know makin' a quarter million dollars a year?
RUSH: Folks, do you understand the multileveled condescension in this short sound bite? Mike, play this again. This is Obama speaking in an apple orchard in New Hampshire yesterday.
OBAMA: He's trying to suggest that -- that -- that a plumber is the guy he's fightin' for. How many plumbers do you know makin' a quarter million dollars a year?
RUSH: In the first place, McCain's fighting for everybody, Obama. You're the one that's divvying up for who you want to fight for. You want to punish certain Americans. McCain doesn't want to punish any. Of course he's fighting for plumbers. He's fighting for everybody! He has fought for everybody, Obama. Name one time you've fought for anybody other than a bunch of leftist radicals who want to overthrow the country as it exists? You're fighting for Warren Buffett's ideas. Here's another thing, Obama and the rest of you. He's copying his vice president here, Joe Biden. "How many plumbers you know making quarter of a million dollars a year?" What a condescending thing to say? Do you realize how he is insulting you plumbers, trying to discredit a voter?
This guy is trying to discredit a voter by saying, "How many plumbers you know make 250 grand a year?" As though plumbers are just dirt. Plumbers are just dirt. I'll bet there are plenty of plumbing businesses. I know damn well. Try to get one when you need one! There are plenty of plumbing businesses that do very well in this country, but to me, this is just striking. "How many plumbers you know making a quarter of a million dollars a year?" Obama, this is not about Joe. It's not about Sam. It's not about anybody but you and your obvious condescending view of the people you claim you want to help. Would somebody explain to me how it is that you make poor people rich by making rich people poor? How does that happen?
Now, unusually, ladies and gentlemen, it's the Democrats who parade people like Joe the Plumber all over the Senate and all over the House, all over these hearing rooms; and they portray them as sob stories. And they try to blame the Republicans for the circumstances these old people are in or these welfare recipients are in or these pregnant women are in or what have you. Now, somehow this guy Joe the Plumber is a fraud because he's in debt? He's a fraud because he doesn't really earn $250,000? He never said he did. He said he thought the business did but he wants to buy it and grow it. Here's guy to the best of his ability is articulating the American dream, and the Democrat Party is trying to squash this guy like he's a cockroach. Now, to this US News and World Reports blog post by James Pethokoukis.
I don't know how to pronounce his name, so I'm just giving all the variables 'cause I don't want to be accused of mispronouncing his name, and the headline of his post here: "Did Barack 'Spread the Wealth' Obama Just Blow the Election? -- No. Really. You're kidding me. Barack Obama actually told that Joe the Plumber guy that he wants to 'spread the wealth around.' What, did Obama just get done reading the Wikipedia entry on Huey 'Share the Wealth' Long or something? Was he somehow channeling that left-wing populist from the Depression? Talk about playing into the most extreme stereotype of your party, that it is infested with socialists," except, Mr. Pethokoukis, it's not a stereotype anymore. The Democrat Party as a socialist party is not a stereotype. He then says... Get this. Now, this is a reporter from US Snooze & World Report.
"A while back I chatted with a University of Chicago professor who was a frequent lunch companion of Obama's. This professor said that Obama was as close to a full-out Marxist as anyone who has ever run for president of the United States. Now, I tend to quickly dismiss that kind of talk as way over the top. My working assumption is that Obama is firmly within the mainstream of Democratic politics." He is. (laughing) They are radical extremist socialists. Anyway... "But if Obama is as free with the sort of redistributive philosophy in private as he has been on the campaign trail this week, I have no doubt that U of Chicago professor really does figure him as a radical, and after last night's debate, a few more Americans might think that way, too. McCain's best line: 'Now, of all times in America, we need to cut people's taxes. We need to encourage business, create jobs, not 'spread the wealth around.'
"By the way, I just notice that had IBD/TIPP poll, the most accurate in 2004, has McCain down by just three points. If the contest is perceived by the voters as a contest between a wealth redistributor and a wealth creator, then it could be a long night come November 4th. This is still a center-right country, gang. Note this Gallup poll from June," and then he cites the 84-13% figure who do not want redistributive policies in the federal government. McCain has to hammer this. Palin does. Palin hammers this constantly in her appearances. But that's what this is all about. The University of Chicago professor says he's "as close to a full-out Marxist as anybody who's ever run for president." Of course, the Drive-Bys say, "Yeah, you've gotta disregard that kind of talk. I think he's in the mainstream of the Democrat Party." These guys don't even know who he is. Half these journalists don't even really know who he is and they're not curious to find out because they're too busy trying to destroy Joe the Plumber.
RUSH: Yeah, I can't get past audio sound bite number eight. Obama saying about the plumber. Well, he's talking about McCain. He's trying to suggest that a plumber is the guy he's fighting for? "How many plumbers you know making a quarter of a million dollars a year?" You know, Obama, you're the guy with class envy; you're the guy that looks in disgust at certain groups of people and elements. McCain's fighting for everybody, buddy. But I just can't get over this condescension that Obama has for everybody. The plumber is supposedly his demographic. Normally people like Obama love people in debt like Joe, 'cause it's not their fault, like these people with their mortgages that they shoulda never been given in the first place. We gotta bail them out. Why isn't Obama asking to bail out Joe? Oh, you got leans? How can we help? Why the hell is he not doing that? He's doing it for everybody else. Some college student complained to him the other day, we had the sound bite, that she is having to pay for her education. Well, well, well, we can't have that, Obama said, we'll do what we can to help out. That's what we're gonna do. Now he's making fun of a guy who's in debt and making fun of a guy who doesn't make $250,000 a year.
I'm going to tell you something, folks. It's not just plumbers. It's about electricians, the guys who install your Lumber Liquidator floors. The guy who comes to your house, sprays for bugs, maybe does your yard mowing and your landscaping, the people that cut your hair, and if you happen to be vain, if you get manicures and pedicures, people who do that. It's about people that mail and deliver your packages; it's about all these people who fix your cars; it's about all the great plumbers that install these Rinnai Tankless Water Heaters; it's what all the people that build fences, it's about all the people that put on roofs; it's about all the people that serve food, about all the people that cook food. Obama may as well have been insulting every working person in this country when he asks, "How many plumbers you know make $250,000 a year, huh, huh, huh? How many you know?" The truth of this guy is coming out and Joe the Plumber did it. There's nothing mountainish about this. There is nothing eloquent about this. We are witnessing a thug who has no sense of humor, which you shall hear in moments coming up, we get to it in the next hour. And Sarah Palin, by the way, is hammering this. This is this morning, West Chester, Ohio, at a campaign rally. The Drive-Bys, I've seen them this morning, ridiculing her for bringing this up.
PALIN: We've really gotta hand it to Joe. Somehow, he got Barack Obama to finally state his intentions in plain language. Senator Obama said that he wants to spread the wealth, and he wants government to take your money and decide how to best redistribute it according to his priorities. Joe suggested that that sounded a little bit like socialism. Whatever you call it, I call it bad medicine for an ailing economy.
RUSH: Bad medicine for an ailing economy. And they're all over her for continuing to bring this up, because they know that Senator Government -- I think that ought to be the permanent name for this guy -- Senator Government has really exposed himself.
RUSH: I want to give you another analogy here about Joe the Plumber because one of the things that the Drive-Bys are trying to do -- and, by the way, do you realize we know more about Joe the Plumber than we know about most of the terrorists who blew up this country in 1993 and 1999? The Drive-By Media has had more interest in exposing whoever Joe the Plumber is. By the way, his name is Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher. They're saying, "His name is not even Joe." Yes, it is! Joe is somebody comfortable with his middle name and allows it to be used, as opposed to who? There's this kid out there named Obama, and we're not allowed to mention his middle name, which is Hussein. But Joe Wurzelbacher is very comfortable having his middle name mentioned.
They're trying to disqualify him, because they know the Obama vulnerability here. The vulnerability is Obama's answer to Joe's question, not what Joe said. So they're trying to disqualify Joe's question. "Well, Joe really isn't a plumber and Joe really doesn't make 250. So Obama's answer doesn't count. Obama's answer is irrelevant because Joe lied in his question." Let me give you an illustration of this. Suppose Obama's going door-to-door in south Florida, or in Brooklyn, and he knocks on somebody's door and the door opens, and the person inside says, "Senator Obama, as a Jew, I want you to promise to support Israel," and Obama said, "Israel is going to have to pay. They've got an unfair advantage and they have to give up half of their hand. They're going to have to pay. They've got an unfair advantage. Those people are poor; Israel is wealthy. They're going to have to pay."
Later it's found out that the person asking the question was not a Jew, so Obama's answer doesn't count? That's what they're trying to say today, that Obama's answer does not count. Obama, I've been watching him, he's making a speech somewhere today. He's uptight. He has been focusing in this speech. McCain has hit him hard, "Senator Obama, my name is not George W. Bush, and if you wanted to run against George Bush, you shoulda done that four years ago." McCain hammered him on that last night, too. Obama's defensive as hell. He got mad. He's focusing on that, wherever he was. He was in Virginia today.
Why is Obama in Virginia? He's supposedly up ten points in Virginia. Why is he wasting time and money in Virginia if he's up ten points there? If he's up ten points, how the hell could he lose Virginia with such little time to go?
RUSH: Drudge just posted a link that said Saturday Night Live has a script, a little skit coming on Joe the Plumber as John McCain's imaginary friend. They keep piling on, folks, and I'm smiling about it. Don't fret.
RUSH: McCain spoke this afternoon in Miami. I mentioned that he was going to come to the defense of Joe the Plumber. Here's how he did it.
MCCAIN: Americans ought to be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks. (wild cheers) Give it up a little for Joe! The question Joe asked about our economy is important because Senator Obama's plan would raise taxes on small businesses that employ... (boos) that employ 16 million Americans. He could have had a simple answer to Joe's question. All he had to do to say to Joe the Plumber and millions of small business people around this country is, "I won't raise your taxes," but he couldn't do that because he's going to raise their taxes. (boos) My friends, when politicians talk about taking your money and "spreading it around," you better hold onto your wallet.
RUSH: And they went nuts again. So there's McCain defending Joe the Plumber. "Americans ought to be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks." The Democrats just have to go out and destroy these people left and right, average Americans. They could resonate. This actually could resonate.