It wouldn't be surprising to hear rumors that Samuel "Joe the Plumber" Wurzelbacher, the Ohio fellow who briefly got famous for asking Barack Obama one poorly crafted question about small business taxation policy on the 2008 campaign trail, was "considering" a congressional run. It's a nice way to get a headline without really meaning it. But apparently national Republicans actually want him to do this?
Wurzelbacher pretended to consider running in Ohio's 9th District in 2010 against longtime incumbent Rep. Marcy Kaptur, an old-school type economically progressive, socially conservative Democrat. Since he was just pretending, he never made it very far. Instead, Kaptur faced some guy who dresses up like a Nazi for fun. She won.
But thanks to redistricting, Ohio Republicans are looking for a strong candidate to take Kaptur on in what could be a much less blue district next year. And in their eyes, that candidate seems to be Joe the Plumber! From the Toledo Blade:
Jon Stainbrook, chairman of the Lucas County Republican Party, said there is "high-level interest in the national Republican Party" in a potential Wurzelbacher candidacy.
"We are encouraging Joe to run," Mr. Stainbrook said. "He hasn't made any official decision yet."
Chris Maloney, spokesman for the Ohio Republican Party, said a candidate like Mr. Wurzelbacher would have strong fund-raising capabilities thanks to national recognition he received during the 2008 presidential campaign, but added such star power would have to be weighed against the advantages of experience that someone like a state legislator could bring to the race.
Yeah, that should probably be a consideration: whether to go with an experienced politician who would know how to win a valuable seat, or whether to go with Joe the Samuel the Wurzelbacher the McPlumber, a guy who's made his living the last few years sucking off the wingnut welfare teat of poorly noticed Pajamas TV web shows, books, and gimmicky gigs with other kooks who share his fake first name.
On the other hand...
"He would make a fantastic candidate," Mr. Stainbrook said. "He goes hunting with Sarah Palin. He's friends with Ann Coulter. He's got the ability to raise the money if he makes a decision to jump into the race."
He goes hunting with Sarah Palin and he's friends with Ann Coulter. Well! Has he shat in Rush Limbaugh's outhouse, too? Shared a churro with Glenn Beck? If so, then he really would be the perfect candidate to win a crucial purple district.
[via Ben Smith; image via AP]