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After much speculation regarding which Republican candidate he would support, former President Donald Trump announced Saturday that he’s endorsing Dr. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania's Senate primary race.
In a statement, Trump described Oz as “Pro-Life, very strong on Crime, the Border, Election Fraud, our Great Military, and our Vets, Tax Cuts" and as someone who would “always fight for and support our under siege Second Amendment.”
“Perhaps most importantly, I believe that Mehmet Oz will be the one most able to win the General Election against a Radical Left Democrat looking to do unthinkable harm to our Country,” Trump wrote.
Trump said in a radio interview last week that he was close to making a decision but had yet to make up his mind. “I do like the man,” he said of Oz, “so we’ll see what happens.”
Trump had previously endorsed Sean Parnell in the race, but Parnell withdrew his candidacy amid allegations of abuse from his estranged wife.
Oz is one of seven Republican candidates running for one of Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate seats following incumbent two-term Republican Senator Pat Toomey’s announcement in October 2020 that he would not run for a third term.
Coverage of the 2022 elections
Experts say Pennsylvania’s November 8, 2022 election will play a key role in determining whether Democrats or Republicans control the Senate in 2023.
On Nov. 30, 2021, Oz announced he would run in the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race as a Republican. His GOP opponents include Kathy Barnette, Jeff Bartos, George Bochetto, Sean Gale, David McCormick and Carla Sands.
Oz was competing for Trump's endorsement against McCormick, a former hedge fund CEO whose wife, Dina Powell, served in Trump's administration.
In a tweet Saturday night, Oz thanked Trump for his support.
Prior to his career in politics, Oz was best known as a celebrity heart surgeon and host of daytime TV’s “The Dr. Oz Show.”
Oz valued his assets at between $104 million and $422 million, according to a tally by The Philadelphia Inquirer, a wide range that is a result of the Senate's request that each asset be valued within a certain dollar bracket. If elected, he would be one of the wealthiest members of the Senate — and possibly the wealthiest.