ABC's David Wright: Joe the Plumber is McCain's 'Mascot'

Liberal ABC reporter David Wright derided Joe Wurzelbacher (AKA "Joe the Plumber") as John McCain's "campaign mascot" during Friday's edition of "Good Morning America." Wright, who has developed quite a track record in the 2008 campaign of boosting Barack Obama and bashing Senator McCain, also sneeringly compared Wurzelbacher's appearance with the Republican to Obama's Ohio campaign rally featuring Bill Clinton.

He sniffed, "Barack Obama turned to a celebrity with a bit more history and stature. Former President Bill Clinton hit the stump for Obama right here in Ohio." On the October 23 "Nightline," Wright attacked the "angry rant" McCain delivered during a speech on taxes. During the October 22 GMA, he insisted that Governor Sarah Palin's attacks on Senator Joe Biden might not be that valid because the vice presidential contender lives in a "glass house."

Appearing on the October 9 GMA, he complained that criticisms by McCain and Palin have painted Obama as "yellow, disloyal and [that he] doesn't belong."

A transcript of the October 31 segment, which aired at 7:03am, follows:

ROBIN ROBERTS: We're going to bring in ABC's David Wright. This is a key state, no doubt about it.

DAVID WRIGHT: One of the big battlegrounds. And here in Ohio, John McCain's trying to get back to basics. He's turning back to the strategy that worked so well for him in New Hampshire, the old-fashioned bus tour. But he has a lot of ground to make up. One final push through the fall foliage. And John McCain knows time is running out.

SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN: I've been in a lot of campaigns. And I've seen momentum. And I can feel momentum in this room tonight. And we're going to win!

WRIGHT: McCain is turning to the one man he hopes can help-

CHANTING CROWD: Joe, the plumber! Joe the plumber!

WRIGHT: -the Ohio plumber who has become a campaign mascot because he asked Barack Obama a tough question about taxes. Joe the plumber was a no-show at the morning rally in Defiance.

MCCAIN: Joe, where are you? Where is Joe? Is Joe with us today? Joe, I thought you were here today.

WRIGHT: The wayward plumber didn't arrive until the afternoon rally in Sandusky. And last night, in Mentor, Ohio-

MCCAIN: Joe the plumber!

WRIGHT: -he finally spoke the words the McCain campaign has been longing to hear.

JOE WURZELBACHER: As far as my vote, it's going to be for a real American, John McCain.

WRIGHT: Barack Obama turned to a celebrity with a bit more history and stature. Former President Bill Clinton hit the stump for Obama right here in Ohio.

former President BILL CLINTON: We have got to hire somebody that can turn this economy around and make it work for ordinary people again.

WRIGHT: The candidate himself was in Florida, Virginia and Missouri.

SENATOR BARACK OBAMA: If you want to know where John McCain will drive this economy, just look in the rear-view mirror. Because when it comes to our economic policies, John McCain has been right next to George Bush.

WRIGHT: On the eve of Halloween, Obama took time for a seasonal campaign stop, a pumpkin patch in Sarasota, Florida. And today, in Florida, we're going to see something interesting. Al Gore, hitting the campaign trail for Obama. His very first presidential campaign visit to the sunshine state since it broke his heart in 2000. And john McCain keeps on riding that bus.

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the associate editor for the Media Research Center's site.