To the G.O.P. establishment—a club that Dr. Mehmet Oz is eager to join—the aspiring senator from Pennsylvania is running a lazy man’s campaign. He has at least one big advantage over his opponent, John Fetterman: namely his health. Fetterman, after all, has understandably been M.I.A. on the campaign trail since his stroke in mid-May, around the time of the primary election.
And although Oz faced a brutal, exhaustive, and expensive primary against David McCormick, seasoned political professionals tell me that Oz should have been filling that vacuum with rallies, events, advertising, handshaking, door knocking and mainly, you know, campaigning. Instead, around the time of the recount, Oz spent part of his time in Pennsylvania and the other part of the time in Palm Beach until at least June 9, waiting it out and doing some fundraising. His first post-primary event was June 10. Then, at the end of June, Oz flew off to Europe, specifically to Ireland, to see family until early July.
That, apparently, was one vacation too many. Indeed, it was a move that greatly annoyed the National Republican Senatorial Committee, I’m told, which has effectively and occasionally brilliantly been shepherding the campaigns of neophytes like Oz, Herschel Walker and J.D. Vance. (“Anyone making statements about the N.R.S.C. are either lying or mistaken,” said the group’s spokesperson, Chris Hartline.)