The Democratic Party's Drubbing of Joe the Plumber

I realize it’s all about winning at this point. But someone has to ask: What has happened to the Democratic Party?

It seems like just yesterday that the party of Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy was talking about income equality and civil rights and worker protections and going to bat for the little guy, the blue collar laborer, the everyday Joe the Plumber.

Now, the well-to-do elites who run the Democratic Party -- and their surrogates -- greet these people with brickbats. They insult them, talk down to them, and even try to destroy them. Isn’t that the sort of war on the working class that Democrats are always accusing those greedy and heartless Republicans of waging?

In fact, since the Democratic presidential nominee isn’t exactly a drinking buddy of Joe Six-pack, he knew enough to recruit a regular Joe to be his running mate. What? Joe Biden wasn't chosen for his eloquence or rhetorical discipline. It’s his job to schmooze so-called lunch bucket voters.

As long as, it seems, one of them doesn’t put down his lunch bucket, straighten his blue collar, and pipe up with an opinion. Or even deign to ask a question of a presidential candidate conducting an expedition through his working-class neighborhood.

That’s what Joe Wurzelbacher did. You know the story: the Ohio resident made the mistake of confronting Barack Obama over the fairness of his tax plan. Wurzelbacher told Obama that he was a plumber who was thinking of buying his own business. But he was worried that, under Obama’s plan, he’d pay more in taxes.

For five minutes, Obama explained that Joe would only pay more if he made more than $250,000 per year.

[In media interviews, Joe acknowledged that he earns nowhere near that amount at the moment. But he said he expects to cross the $250,000 threshold someday.]