John McCain became obsessed with "Joe the Plumber" at last night's debate. Today he said Joe the Plumber was the winner of the debate. The Toledo Blade reports today that: "He is also not registered to operate as a plumber in Ohio, which means he’s not a plumber." They quote the business manager of the local Plumber's Union who said, "This individual has got no schooling, no licenses, he’s never been to a training program, union or non-union, in the United States of America."
What does this all mean? McCain can't buy a break. We also learned that McCain has hired a helicopter to take him from Philadelphia to New York City in order to make the Letterman show. There are airport delays in Newark which forced McCain to change his plans. Remember he canceled his last Letterman appearance two hours before the show, claiming he had to catch a plane back to Washington, D.C. to address the Wall Street bailout. He didn't catch the plane. He did an interview with Katie Couric, and then stayed overnight in New York City to give a speech at the Clinton Initiative. This lead to a continual assault by Letterman over the next few weeks.
All the instant polls directly after the debate, including Frank Luntz's Fox News focus group, showed that Obama won the debate among undecided voters. (CNN - 58% Obama, 31% McCain, CBS 53% Obama, 22% McCain, Politico 49% Obama, McCain 46%)
McCain was on the attack early, but appeared to be angry. He did little to dispel the "Hey kids, get off my lawn!" image. Obama, again, appeared calm and composed. Nothing McCain did could rattle Obama's cool demeanor. McCain did not get he game changer he so desperately needed.
McCain probably did, however, manage to alienate the last of the undecided Hillary voters with this response on an abortion question. After continually referring to Obama's position as "pro abortion," McCain said this: "Just again, the example of the eloquence of Senator Obama. His health for the mother. You know, that's been stretched by the pro-abortion movement in America to mean almost anything."