**Correction Appended**

After Kaptur beat Kucinich, “Joe the Plumber” will now face the veteran Democrat in the fall. – Politico

The man Barack Obama made famous in 2008 (see the video above), who became the bane of John McCain’s existence, is now a serious candidate for Congress.

Joe Wurzelbacher, aka “Joe the Plumber” squeaked out a win, while “Mean Jean” Schmidt, the woman who dared to call Jack Murtha a “coward” on the House floor, lost. Good riddance to her.

Marcy Kaptur will be his opponent and as Dennis Kucinich can now attest, she’s as tough a campaigner as you’re going to find.

Rep. Marcy Kaptur, though I’ve never seen her on the ground, is one of the most potent political messengers I’ve ever seen on television. Her blue collar appeal and talent for talking issues, stripping them down so the stakes are understood, is remarkable.

However, Marcy Kaptur was a prime proponent and pusher of the Stupak Amendment, with her religiosity making her part of the anti-women’s freedom Democratic caucus.

Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), who is undecided on the health care vote, said she is urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to hold a separate vote reaffirming Rep. Bart Stupak’s (D-Mich.) strict language limiting abortion insurance coverage to help clear the way for passage of the reform package Sunday. – Roll Call

This race is going to make terrific cable fodder.

In other congressional race news, Chellie Pingree has taken a pass on running for the Senate, but will run for re-election in the House. Popular Independent former Gov. Angus King decided to run for Sen. Olympia Snowe’s seat, with the likelihood that he’ll caucus with Democrats one reason not to run. Why lose Pingree in the House when you can “win” with an Independent getting 2 for the price of 1?

CORRECTION: Marcy Kaptur beat Dennis Kucinich, Jean Schmidt lost to Cincinnati Mayoral candidate Brad Wenstrup. Joe Wurzelbacher came close to losing to Steve Kraus. Kaptur will now face Wurzelbacher. Title and edit done to reflect this.