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'Joe the plumber' running for Congress

TOLEDO, Ohio -- Joe the Plumber is plunging back into politics.

The Ohio man who became a household name after questioning Barack Obama about his economic policies during the 2008 presidential campaign has filed paperwork to run for Congress.

Samuel "Joe" Wurzelbacher's statement of candidacy, filed with the Federal Elections Commission last week, says he plans to run as a Republican in Ohio's 9th U.S. House district. The filing means a campaign committee can raise and spend funds on Wurzelbacher's behalf.

The seat is now held by Marcy Kaptur, the longest serving Democratic woman in the House.

Wurzelbacher rose out of obscurity in 2008 after questioning then-candidate Obama about his economic policies, leading the Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain, to repeatedly cite "Joe the plumber" in a presidential debate.

Later, Wurzelbacher, who was not a licensed plumber, campaigned with McCain and his running mate, Sarah Palin. He also wrote a book, spoke at conservative gatherings and has worked with a veterans' organization in Alaska that provides outdoor programs for wounded soldiers.

He drew cheers at a tea party rally last year in Cincinnati when he told the crowd not to let "a bunch of liberal pansies" take away their rights.

His district, redrawn this year, is heavily tilted toward Democrats. Republicans recruited him to make a run. Cuyahoga County Republican Chairman Rob Frost is also seeking the GOP nomination. Kaptur and Rep. Dennis Kucinich, whose Cleveland district was lumped into Kaptur's, will meet in a Democratic primary.

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