Dr. Oz will renounce his Turkish citizenship if elected to Senate: 'I will only be a U.S. citizen'

Dr. Oz discusses his Senate campaign platform and vision for America’s future

Republican candidate Dr. Mehemet Oz discusses his run for Senate in Pennsylvania on ‘Hannity’

EXCLUSIVE: Dr. Mehmet Oz on Wednesday told Fox News that if he is elected to the U.S. Senate to represent Pennsylvania, he will renounce his Turkish citizenship before being sworn into office.

Oz, who as a dual citizen is legally permitted to serve in Congress, had previously indicated he had no intention of renouncing his Turkish citizenship, which he has maintained in order to take care of his mother, who lives in Istanbul and suffers from Alzheimer’s.

“My dual citizenship has become a distraction in this campaign,” Oz told Fox News Wednesday. “I maintained it to care for my ailing mother, but after several weeks of discussions with my family, I’m committing that before I am sworn in as the next U.S. Senator for Pennsylvania I will only be a U.S. citizen.”

Mehmet Oz, celebrity physician and U.S. Republican Senate candidate for Pennsylvania, center, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, Sunday, Feb. 27, 2022. (Tristan Wheelock/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
(Tristan Wheelock/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Pennsylvania is one of the key Senate races in the 2022 midterm election cycle that will decide control of the upper chamber. 

The state’s GOP primary is one of the most hotly contested and most-watched of the cycle, as Oz faces off against a crowded field of Republicans, including former hedge fund CEO and veteran Dave McCormick. The candidates are all vying for the GOP nomination to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Pat Toomey in the battleground state.  

McCormick, on the campaign trail, has called on Oz to renounce his dual citizenship with Turkey.

“Do it now. Voters can’t trust Mehmet Oz,” McCormick said in comments Wednesday to Fox News. “He has lied about his position on abortion, the 2nd Amendment, immigration, masks, and Fauci to name a few. Renounce your Turkish citizenship now. We won’t be fooled again.” 

Last month, a campaign spokesperson said that “voters of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have a right to ask why Cleveland, Ohio-born Mehmet Oz won’t renounce his Turkish citizenship and why he chose to serve in the Turkish military over America’s military.”

“How can he claim to be America First when he has dual loyalties?” McCormick spokesperson Jess Szymanski asked. 

Oz called the McCormick campaign’s tactic “disgraceful.” 

David McCormick, the former CEO of a giant hedge fund, declared his candidacy for Senate on Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, formally joining a crowded field of Republican contenders vying for the GOP nomination in the key battleground state of Pennsylvania.
(McCormick Senate campaign)

“The bigoted attacks my opponent Dave McCormick has made against me as the child of immigrants are reminiscent of slurs made in the past about Catholics and Jews,” Oz told Fox News. “It is a sign of McCormick’s desperate campaign that he has resorted to this disgraceful tactic.”

Oz added: “It is completely disqualifying behavior for anyone aiming to serve in the United States Senate.”

Meanwhile, a Fox News survey of Pennsylvania GOP primary voters earlier this month found that McCormick tops Oz by 9 points (24%-15%). Others receive support in the single digits, including Kathy Barnette and Jeff Bartos (9% each), and Carla Sands (6%). Nearly one-third (31%) are unsure which candidate they will support in the May 17 primary. 

However, McCormick’s lead is not rock solid: only 22% of his backers are certain they will support him at the ballot box, while 77% may change their mind.  Nearly twice as many Oz supporters, 40%, feel sure to back him (59% could change).

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser and Dana Blanton contributed to this report.

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