Joe the Plumber's Story Line Springs a Few Leaks

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2008 9:18 PM CDT
Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., facing camera, talks to plumber Joe Wurzelbacher in Holland, Ohio, Sunday, Oct. 12, 2008.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
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(Newser) – Tired of Joe the Plumber? His life has been turned upside since he became an unintentional media celebrity, the New York Times notes. Among the odds and ends:

  • He is a single father, 34, whose real name is Samuel J. Wurzelbacher.
  • He does plumbing work for a contractor but is not a licensed plumber. Ohio doesn't require it, but Toledo does. He works in Toledo and lives in its suburbs.
  • He owes nearly $1,200 in back taxes.

  • Explaining why he initially challenged Obama: “You know, I’ve always wanted to ask one of these guys a question and really corner them." He complained that he "still got a tap dance," adding, "almost as good as Sammy Davis Jr.”
  • He called Social Security "a joke" and said: "I have parents. I don't need another set of parents called the government."