Dr. Oz Campaign Starts Quietly (Aside From a Few F-Bombs)

TV star doesn't even have yard signs yet in Pennsylvania, Olivia Nuzzi writes
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2021 2:55 PM CST
Dr. Oz Campaign Starts Quietly (Aside From a Few F-Bombs)
Dr. Mehmet Oz, shown in 2019, is seeking the GOP Senate nomination in Pennsylvania next year.   (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Dr. Mehmet Oz is running for the Republican nomination for the US Senate in Pennsylvania, but it's not clear how you'd know it. Olivia Nuzzi writes in New York that five days into the race she found the TV star's campaign headquarters deserted. He doesn't want to be interviewed, at least not by Nuzzi, who recounts calling his wife in search of an interview. Lisa Oz quickly hung up, or so she thought. Lisa Oz hadn't actually done so, "meaning that as [she and her husband] engaged in paranoid conversation and argument for more than four minutes, I remained on the line, hearing every word of it," writes Nuzzi. She recounts the conversation, and it's full of plenty of F-bombs, many in the form of "f---ing girl reporter."

So she looks at the "political life of Dr. Oz," without speaking with the man himself. She writes that Republicans say he has no winning message and no apparent path to victory in 2022. Not even his friend and mentor Oprah Winfrey is offering to help his campaign. "It's up to the residents of Pennsylvania to decide who will represent them," Winfrey said in a statement. But he is a star, the longtime host of the Dr. Oz Show. The daytime program, which Oz quit to launch his campaign, was successful, though the host was criticized by some who said he traded his medical credibility for ratings by endorsing pseudoscience and quack cures.

The 61-year-old has had trouble so far articulating his positions, including his reasons for running for the open Senate seat, which Nuzzi notes are filled with references to his old job and celebrity. Oz said he's merely "stepping forward to help cure our country's ills" because "America’s heartbeat is in a code red in need of a defibrillator to shock it back to life." Asked about his goals, Oz referenced his book series by saying, "It all starts with YOU!" And he's trying to walk fine lines, balancing his previously stated views with those of Trump Republicans on abortion, for example. Pressed on Fox News about when life begins, Oz stumbled and talked in circles, Nuzzi writes. (Read the full piece here.)

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