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October 16, 2008

NYTimes: Joe the Plumber is Opertating Without a License

Last night I blogged about the phoniness of the whole "Joe the Plumber" ruse being put on by the McCain campaign. The story just got more interesting and, dare I say it, more embarrassing for McCain.

The New York Times reports that Joe Wurzelbacher (any relation to Richard Wurzlebacher?) is not even a licensed plumber.

Unlike some other states, Ohio does not have a formal statewide licensing system for plumbers. But the city of Toledo and other municipalities do, Mr. Joseph said, and Mr. Wurzelbacher has not met those requirements.

“All contractors are licensed, and he does not have a license, either as a contractor or a plumber,” the union official said, citing a search of government records. “I can’t find that he’s ever even applied for any kind of apprenticeship, and he has never belonged to local 189 in Columbus, which is what he claims on his Facebook page.”

According to public records, Mr. Wurzelbacher has been subject to two liens, each over $1,000, one of which — a personal tax lien — is still outstanding.

Uh-oh. "Explosive" is a word that comes to mind when pondering the conversations now taking place inside the McCain campaign offices. I think it's safe to say that plans to feature Joe the Unlicensed Plumber alongside McCain and Palin on the campaign trail have just... well, exploded.

Having a current license to do business, especially as a contractor, is so basic it's hard for me to believe anyone would think he could pass himself off as legitimate without one. I have two licenses, one from the city of Seattle and one from the state of Washington. It's also required that all independent contractors be bonded and insured. Should we ask Joe Wurzlebacher if he carries contractor's insurance?

As Johnny goes marching home to Arizona he may forever be haunted by the tsk-tsking words of his trusty sidekick, Sarah Palin: "Say it ain't so, Joe!"

Posted by shoephone on October 16, 2008 at 12:20 PM in Candidate Races, Media, National and International Politics | Permalink


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