Dr. Mehmet Oz, a celebrity heart surgeon, joined Fox News host Sean Hannity on Tuesday night to discuss his announcement to enter the U.S. Senate race in Pennsylvania as a Republican.
“America is in crisis, that’s not news. Our values are under attack,” he said. “So, I want to serve America in its time of need. I think I can do that by running for the U.S. Senate seat in the state of Pennsylvania.”
Oz lamented big government, saying that his political philosophy centers around “liberty and freedom and that to me means limited government.”
“The more we can be local, the more we can trust the people in our communities, the better off we are,” he said. “I believe in energy independence. That’s a big deal here in Pennsylvania, but we don’t as a nation want to be begging other countries like we’re starting to do to change what they’re doing with energy because, you know, we’re in hock.”
“I believe in capitalism, which means lower taxes and regulations, so people can really compete, and I respect the Constitution, a brilliantly written document that I think should be honored on the bench, and sometimes isn’t. We have free market solutions that work,” he added. “And in healthcare, I’ll tell you, this is my specialty area and I spent my life studying this, we can protect against pre-existing conditions and use free market solutions to health care that makes it affordable, accessible for everybody.”
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: Now, a big breaking development in the great state of Pennsylvania tonight as heart surgeon, Emmy Award-winning television host, Dr. Mehmet Oz, is now jumping into the Republican Senate primary.
Let’s take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, POLITICAL AD)
DR. MEHMET OZ (R), CANDIDATE FOR U.S. SENATE IN PENNSYLVANIA: My parents came to America to find a better life and they did. I attended great universities, raised a family, and became a successful surgeon.
I invented a heart valve that saves thousands of lives. Then, I started a TV show to advocate for you taking control of your health, and took on the medical establishment to argue against costly drugs and skyrocketing medical bills.
But COVID has shown us that our system is broken. We lost too many lives, too many jobs, and too many opportunities because Washington got it wrong. It took away our freedom without making us safer and tried to kill our spirit and our dignity.
As a heart surgeon, I know how precious life is. Pennsylvania needs a conservative who will put America first, one who can reignite our divine spark, bravely fight for freedom and tell it like it is.
That’s why I’m running for Senate.
I’m Dr. Oz and I approve this message.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Now, Dr. Oz is vowing to run on a campaign of putting you, the American people, first, to be a servant of the people of Pennsylvania, take on the Washington establishment to protect fundamental freedoms, keeping America safe and secure and he says, again, to serve the people of Pennsylvania.
Here to talk about his candidacy is Dr. Oz himself.
There’s a lot of similarities — before Donald Trump ran for office, I’ve — I’ve been friends with him for many years. We had so many conversations, too numerous to count late into the night. And I got to really know you during COVID and you were calling, you know, Europe at 3:00 in the morning and updating me on anecdotal information when we had nothing to work with at the time.
And awhile back, you told me that you are thinking of running. First of all, I said you’re nuts, it’s a — it’s a horrible world. And I want you to explain in your own words what you told me and why you’re running.
OZ: Well, you did warn me but today was an exhilarating day. And let me give you a little background. My parents immigrated here legally and our country provided unparalleled opportunities that have benefited me, and I feel firmly it is time to repay my debt.
America is in crisis, that’s not news. Our values are under attack. So, I want to serve America in its time of need. I think I can do that by running for the U.S. Senate seat in the state of Pennsylvania.
Now, Americans — and here’s how I see it — Americans deserve better solutions. Doctors are about solutions. But instead, people with good ideas are shamed, they’re silenced, they’re bullied, they’re canceled. You talk about it, Sean, all the time.
And in medicine, if we cannot say what we see, people die, literally. That’s what we always tell the patients, the truth, because they’ll respect us and we can deal with realities if we’re honest with each other.
So, let me talk about COVID for a second because as a physician, I’ve really spent a lot of time trying to understand what went wrong. And the mistakes are emblematic of other issues that we’re struggling with in our great country.
Remember the phrase “two weeks to flatten the curve”, right?? That metastasized into this incredible authoritarianism overreaching that did not necessarily make us safer. People with yards — big yards told people with no yards to stay indoors. That’s where the virus was.
Remember they closed the parks. They shamed people about beaches, right? And now, they’re threatening the same overreach with the Omicron as you were just talking about.
I think those choices should be yours, the American people’s. And I fought to empower my audience, my patients, and now the voters of Pennsylvania and I’ve taken on big pharma.
I’ve gone to battle with big tech. I’ve gone up against agro chem companies, the big ones, right? I’ve got scars to prove it.
And I cannot be bought, Sean. Cannot be bought. And I’ll keep fighting those battles to empower the folks of Pennsylvania and around the country.
So, here’s what I’m hearing from my patients, from my viewers, from people all over the country — there’s three basic goals.
The first is we need safety, right? And safety in our body means high quality health care. That’s got to come. But on the streets, it means well-trained police.
You know, there was a college student murdered this week. It broke the all-time record of 501 murders in Pennsylvania, where I am right now. Shameful.
We got safety problems in the borders, too, which was basically the narrative is false. It’s about cartels trafficking human beings, that they’re — and successfully being done so they keep doing it, and they’re bringing opiates along the border with them. That’s 100,000 people who’ve died this year from opiates. And we’re not making it hard because we are letting everything come across the border.
The second thing everyone is telling me is they want their kids to thrive. They want their kids to do better than they did. I certainly want that for my children. The only way to get there, the path to success is kids is getting them educated.
So, you need choice so you can actually make sure that you can take kids where you need to be. You need local rule, why wouldn’t you be involved in figuring the curriculum of your kids’ education, and you got to have your values defended. Your parents and your — and the teachers’ values and the kids’ values need to align or else the parents win because nobody loves the kids more than the parents.
The third thing everyone is asking about are jobs. And I tell you, it’s interesting. Jobs are about dignity. They’re about purpose, and they’re also about savings, which are being eroded now by inflation.
But this is why I am excited, Sean, the prognosis is good. I think and a good example of this innovation is when President Trump had Operation Warp Speed that gave the world the mRNA vaccine, right, and I don’t like mandates, but that was a big advance and America did that. We had that can-do spirit.
And America’s other great solutions, but we’re suffocating them. I’m running to ensure that they see the light of day. I know we can do it.
And here’s my pledge, my promise to everybody: I want to be your public servant and every choice I make will be serving the citizens of Pennsylvania and the United States, and none of them will serve a special interest in Washington, many of whom I’ve been at war with for most of my career.
Let’s reinvigorate America and let’s see that divine spark in each other because it’s there.
HANNITY: Let me ask you this: the attacks have come in already, and allegations you don’t even live in Pennsylvania. Care — you — I’m sure you probably saw that earlier today.
OZ: I saw it.
I grew up just across the border south of Philadelphia. I went to medical school at Penn in Philadelphia. I went to business school in Wharton in Philadelphia. I met and married my wife which was the best thing I ever did 36 years ago in Philadelphia and I bore two children or she bore them, four, in Philadelphia.
I came home a year ago. It feels good to be back, I love the state and I’ll represent it honorably.
HANNITY: Let me ask you because I don’t know how much money you make but syndicated programming that is successful usually tend to do very well. So, you’re going to — you’re going to take a big hit financially.
So, I wanted to get a little deeper because I did say to you this is a blood sport and I warned other people. I said, are you prepared for this? I talked to Herschel Walker, for example, and Herschel is like, I’m ready. I can — I’m willing to take whatever it takes. And all of this will come your way in the days to come.
What is it specifically — I have a — I’m a registered conservative. I’m not a Republican but I mostly end up voting Republican because it is — we have a two-party system.
I could tell you in a minute what my political philosophy is, but rather than me tell you mine, what is yours?
OZ: Well, I’ll tell you one thing for sure, any government that’s large enough to give you everything is powerful enough to take it all away. So I don’t want that. I want liberty and freedom and that to me means limited government. We can do it better than folks very far away from us who don’t know our local problems.
The more we can be local, the more we can trust the people in our communities, the better off we are.
I believe in energy independence. That’s a big deal here in Pennsylvania, but we don’t as a nation want to be begging other countries like we’re starting to do to change what they’re doing with energy because, you know, we’re in hock.
I believe in capitalism, which means lower taxes and regulations, so people can really compete, and I respect the Constitution, a brilliantly written document that I think should be honored on the bench, and sometimes isn’t. We have free market solutions that work.
And in healthcare, I’ll tell you, this is my specialty area and I spent my life studying this, we can protect against pre-existing conditions and use premarket solutions to health care that makes it affordable, accessible for everybody.
I’ve got a little secret for you — the worst medicine is bad medicine. The best way to save money is to give people high-quality care. They do better and you won’t waste money.
HANNITY: You mentioned immigration earlier in your parent status, where you stand on immigration?
OZ: Immigration is a big problem for a couple of reasons. For one, we’re subsidizing cartels that are involved in human trafficking. I mentioned they’re bringing opiates across the border but lots of other issues as well.
I think President Trump was right. People should wait on the Mexican side of the border to coming across illegally, let’s deal with all the issues there and not put law enforcement in an impossible predicament where they are forced — now that people in this country, to chase them down when we know they’re not coming back for their follow-up visits.
HANNITY: I say I’m a conservative. I used to say I’m a Reagan conservative. I would say I’m an America First, Make America Great Again conservative.
How would you describe, in just a sentence, your political ideology, philosophy? You are running as — in a Republican primary, how would you sum it up?
OZ: I match yours. I think this country has all the building blocks to be spectacular. The infighting is hurting our ability to do what’s possible. I know as a physician that when you come together, you save lives. I think we can do that exact same thing in this nation.
There’s nothing that should hold us back. If we focus on those three goals I mentioned earlier, focus on safe lives, so you’ll feel comfortable, make sure your kids are at least is able to survive in the future world as you would have been, and to make sure we’ve got jobs so people have dignity.
HANNITY: You know, Dr. Oz, we need better people to run for office. It’s become so vicious hostile — look at the way they treated Donald Trump for five years. I wish you luck in this race. I’ve known you for a long time. We’ve had a lot of private conversations. I know you’re sincere in everything that you’re saying.
I think people — the one thing I really like that you said is you want to be a public servant of the people and a lot of people go to Washington really end up serving themselves. I don’t suspect that’s your motivation and we look forward to having you back. Thanks for being with us.
OZ: God bless you, Sean.
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