Mike Pompeo Warns Senate Candidate Dr. Oz Could Be National Security Threat Over Turkish Ties
Michael Pompeo, former U.S. secretary of state, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando, Florida, U.S., on Friday, Feb. 25, 2022. Launched in 1974, the Conservative Political Action Conference is the largest gathering of conservatives in the world.
Tristan Wheelock / Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned during a Friday press briefing that Republican Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz was a potential national security threat due to his ties with his native country of Turkey.

Pompeo’s remarks come after ABC News reported this week on a photograph that showed Oz voting in Turkish elections as recently as 2018. Oz was also accused this week of violating  the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) by not registering as a foreign agent while he was doing work for Turkish Airlines, which is 49.12% owned by the Turkish government.

“We criticize American candidates all the time because they didn’t vote. This is different from that,” Pompeo said. “Not only did he not engage in the American [process] but he engaged in the Turkish political process. That raises in my mind a lot of judgments about his priority.”

“Maybe it’s all innocent, maybe it’s all straight up, but we and the people of Pennsylvania and the Americans who he will be representing as one of 100 members of the US Senate voting on important national security matters need to understand the scope and depth of his relationship with the Turkish government,” he continued. “I was involved in the process which adjudicated efforts to receive national security information — the clearance process inside the United States. And precisely the things that we have seen reported are the kinds of things that those who are making those judgments about whether to provide that sensitive American information — to government officials or to private citizens, to contractors are working on behalf of the American government — these are precisely the kinds of questions they would ask in making such a determination and they get answers.”

Pompeo added that the questions were usually asked during a polygraph exam.

Oz’s campaign responded by claiming that the remarks from Pompeo, who also previously served as the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), were “pathetic and xenophobic.”

A letter this week from Armenian National Committee of America Executive Director Aram Hamparian to Matthew G. Olsen, Assistant Attorney General for National Security, urged the Department of Justice to launch an investigation into whether Oz violated FARA.

David Laufman, who oversaw the Justice Department’s FARA enforcement from 2014 to 2018, said that he believes that it “would be appropriate for [the Justice Department] to undertake logical, analytical and investigative steps to determine whether Dr. Oz acted as a public relations counsel or publicity agent in the United States on behalf of Turkish Airlines.”


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