Is Joe jumping the gun a little?
After witnessing the brutal battle between Marcy Kaptur and Dennis Kucinich, Samuel "Joe the Plumber" Wurzelbacher, has issued what can only be seen as a pre-emptive attack.
In a statement issued Thursday, Wurzelbacher called on Kaptur to denounce "illegal robo-calls" - something that shouldn't be necessary if they're already illegal.
The campaign claims robo-calls in which the funding source is not identified have been used in a House race in Illinois, and he wants to make sure that doesn't happen in the 9th District race.
Wurzelbacher, who eked out a victory in the Republican primary March 6 and now faces an uphill challenge defeating Miss Kaptur in a strongly Democratic district, vowed he would avoid the use of "dirty tricks."
Kaptur has a reputation for being ladylike and religious (Catholic), but proved she can fight with the gloves off when she beat Kucinich for the Democratic nomination with the help of some harsh advertising that Kucinich groused was not fact-based. (As if she had to prove it again, after defeating Republican Rich Iott in 2010).
Here's Wurzelbacher's statement:
“Robocalls are a part of the ‘politics as usual’ game that is played, and there are
laws that govern how these calls can be conducted. My campaign will work within
these laws, and I am now publicly asking any group that supports my candidacy to
do the same.
“I am calling on my opponent, Marcy Kaptur, to do the same. Does she have the
courage? Will she denounce these illegal robocalls, and vow not to use them
against me like I am promising not use them against her? I’m not going to pay a
computer to tell lies about Rep. Kaptur or to mislead constituents about her record.
Her record speaks for itself. I don’t need to make up anything about her in order for
folks to see the clear difference between us.”
In a responding statement, Kaptur campaign manager Steve Fought provided the assurance Wurzelbacher asked for, sort of.
"With the advent of Super PACs, modern political campaigns have taken many strange turns. Congresswoman Kaptur has never used illegal robocalls and never will. Maybe Joe, the Plumber, should pledge to stop using campaign contributions to pay himself a salary," Mr. Fought wrote in an email.
As allowed by federal election law, Wurzelbacher started taking a monthly salary of $3,842 after taxes to replace the income he said he has given up to run for office.