Where does Dr. Oz — and his reputation — go from here?


PHILADELPHIA – Is there no such thing as a second act? Mehmet Oz has accomplished several things: Starting as a cardiothoracic surgeon, he has found success as a teacher, inventor, author, TV personality, dubious product salesman—and most recently, he won Donald Trump in the Republican primary The Trump-backed victor gets an open U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania.

then he lost. Only four percentage points, but still a loss.

It was a rare and very public failure for a man marked by success in many fields. Oz gave up a lucrative television career, a prestigious medical practice and his North Jersey mansion, and poured $27 million of his fortune into the campaign, only to be ruthlessly mocked online as an interloper, His lettuce recipe is dubious — and, in Pennsylvania, for using that word.

What’s next for Oz, 62? The campaign did not respond to a request for comment. In his concession statement, Oz offered few hints other than “I hope we as a nation begin the recovery process as soon as possible.”

A return to surgery and teaching medicine seems unlikely. This spring, Oz ended his long association with Columbia, where he is now a professor emeritus at Columbia and a special lecturer at the Medical Center, a title for retired faculty members. Colombian officials declined to comment further.

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Money may not be the main motivator, although he is very good at accumulating wealth. According to his campaign finance disclosures, Oz is worth between $100 million and $422 million.

Dr. Oz’s Trump-infused Senate race is coming

Political insiders point out that Oz’s candidacy was hampered by the same vote as gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, a 2020 election denier who supports an abortion ban but Lost by 14 percentage points. There was also Oz’s embrace of Trump, whose candidate had a poor showing in Pennsylvania on Tuesday.

Does Oz’s second act in politics have a second act? If so, where and how will he play? “If he chooses to do that, he certainly has a chance to be the leader of Pennsylvania,” said GOP media strategist Charlie Gros.

“Oz can spend the next few years here, volunteering and being a part of the community to overcome this outsider status,” said Christopher Borick, director of the Muilenburg Institute’s Institute for Public Opinion. The biggest weakness, it’s his biggest weakness.”

Even so, Oz may struggle to overcome Pennsylvania voters’ preference for politicians The first act takes place in the Commonwealth—no matter how much meat-pressing celebrity doctors are willing to put up with, Wawa-and-Sheetz photo ops and chicken/cheesesteak/pierogi dinners. The outsider status was “difficult for him to overcome,” Borrick said. “If no one else is in line, maybe.”

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but someone other queue.If Oz decides to run for the Senate again in Pennsylvania in 2024, when Three-term incumbent Robert P. Casey Jr., a Democrat who has risen in his seat, is likely to face a costly and lengthy rematch with hedge fund CEO David McCormick in this year’s Republican primary , Oz barely beat him, but he was still popular with the Republican leadership. Here’s a thought: Could Oz try to maintain his political career in New Jersey?

“It’s not impossible,” Borrick said. “But you can only imagine Democratic ads targeting him.”

He could return to talk-show television, making Oz good enough to run for office in the first place. However, he may find the environment colder than when he retreated.

An underwhelming ending to Dr. Oprah’s Dr. Oz play

Daytime TV is about mass appeal, Matthew Baum, a communications professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, said Oz “has a big problem right now because he’s giving it his all.”

“Doctors are more trusted among Americans. When he became a powerful partisan politician, he kind of threw in the towel,” Baum said. “It’s a fundamental breach of that trust. He decisively crossed that line.”

Oz’s views on abortion, a major issue in the midterm elections for Democratic voters, could be particularly alienating to potential consumers of Oz’s content. “His health brand is dead,” said Christopher Balfe, a partner at Red Seat Ventures, a media consultant specializing in conservative media. “You don’t think Mehmet Oz is a doctor. You think he’s a Republican.”

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“Once you stand out as a Republican, there’s no going back. The mainstream of daytime TV is closed to him,” Balfe said. “He needs to choose a different path.”

Of course, there are places in American television where celebrities can get involved in politics. “One component of conservative media is older Americans,” Balfe said. “There may be some interest.”

Oz might try to become a regular on conservative channels like Fox News, where he’s a regular on Sean Hannity’s shows. “He’s clearly a compelling TV personality,” Balfe said. “He can do a great job on the podcast.”

“I can even imagine some new adventures for Oz,” Baum said. “It’s not easy to regain the trust of non-conservatives, but he can have a very lucrative career in the huge TV ecosystem, one foot in politics and one foot in entertainment.”

For someone with Oz ability in attracting advertisers And the audience, there are plenty of possible next moves. Even if they are not in Washington.

Again, Oz could be everywhere.


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