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Jersey Shore star taunts Dr Oz amid claims the Senate hopeful is a stranger to adopted state Pennsylvania

Republican is trailing Democrat John Fetterman in polls of the critical race

Abe Asher
Friday 15 July 2022 05:39 BST
'Great guy': Trump endorses Dr Mehmet Oz in Republican primary for Senate race

Pennsylvania Democrats and their allies continue to remind Republican Senate candidate Mehmet Oz that his ties to the Keystone State are less than longstanding.

On Thursday, Democratic nominee John Fetterman posted a video of Nicole Polizzi, or Snooki, on his Twitter account in which the Jersey Shore star ruthlessly mocks Mr Oz for hopping across the New Jersey border to run for office in Pennsylvania.

“I heard you moved from New Jersey to Pennsylvania to look for a new job — and personally, I don’t know why anyone would want to leave Jersey, cause it’s like the best place ever and we’re all hot messes — but I want to say best of luck to you,” Ms Polizzi says in the video. “I know you’re away from home and you’re in a new place, but Jersey will not forget you.”

“Don’t worry, because you’ll be back home in Jersey soon,” Ms Polizzi continues, alluding to a potential Democratic victory in November. “This is only temporary. So good luck, you got this, and Jersey loves you.”

Ms Polizzi ends the video by blowing a kiss to the camera.

Mr Fetterman’s campaign has not been shy about contrasting the lifelong ties to Pennsylvania their candidate enjoys with Mr Oz’s newfound residency status.

While Mr Fetterman was born in West Redding and grew up in York before serving as mayor of the town of Braddock and lieutenant governor of the state, Mr Oz is a longtime New Jersey resident who owns a mansion in Cliffside Park.

Though Mr Oz was for years active in New Jersey politics, he registered to vote at his in-laws’ Pennsylvania address in the buildup to the 2020 election and announced his candidacy in the commonwealth just more than a year later.

Despite winning Donald Trump’s coveted endorsement, Mr Oz only narrowly squeaked through the Republican primary held in May — fending off former hedge fund CEO David McCormick by a margin of less than 1,000 votes.

Since then, as Mr Fetterman has relentlessly attacked both his residency status and wealth, some Pennsylvania Republicans have begun to publicly wonder about the viability of his campaign. In a Politico article published earlier this month, Arnie McClure, chair of the Huntingdon County Republican Party stated: “I don’t have much confidence in their campaign.”

The polls are providing further reasons for skepticism. Despite president Joe Biden’s unpopularity and the generally unfavourable midterm conditions for the president’s party, Mr Oz has not led a single poll of the general election matchup with Mr Fetterman.

Instead, in three June polls of the race, Mr Fetterman — whose Twitter account header is an image of a Dr Oz for New Jersey bumper sticker — led by four, six, and nine points.

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