A former U.S. Secretary of State made another bid for national attention before a possible 2024 campaign to become the president.
Republican Mike Pompeo, who led the state department under former President Donald Trump, questioned whether Dr. Mehmet Oz is a Turkish agent. The doctor rocketed to fame based on frequent appearances on the Oprah Winfrey show and later hosted and coproduced “The Dr. Oz Show” for 12 years. He announced his candidacy to replace retiring Senator Pat Toomey, R-Pa., in November 2021.
Dr. Oz parlayed his TV celebrity role into a large fortune, according to the New York Times report saying he would be the wealthiest Senator in Washington if elected. The Turkish-American doctor reportedly owns considerable property and huge amounts of stock in companies such as Apple, Alphabet and Amazon. A recent government filing shows he is a multimillionaire with between $500,000 and $1 million in his J.P. Morgan joint checking account.
The Senate financial disclosure form shows that his homes in New Jersey and Pennsylvania and his Florida cattle farm are each valued between $1 and $5 million. He and his wife also own a Palm Beach rental property that yields them between $1 and $5 million in rent. The doctor further disclosed he made $2.2 million last year as host and supervising producer of the “The Dr. Oz Show,” plus another $7 million as owner of Oz Media, which coproduced the show.
Despite living the American dream, the doctor, Pompeo said Friday, is a potential national security threat due to ties with his native country of Turkey.
As a former secretary of state, Pompeo should be aware U.S. law allows citizens to hold dual nationalities. “A U.S. citizen may naturalize in a foreign state without any risk to his or her U.S. citizenship,” the state department explains on its website.
The attention-getting statement Pompeo made during a press briefing follows a high-profile visit to the island of Taiwan earlier this year. He reportedly did not travel there as an official representative of the U.S. but received considerable press coverage. Pompeo’s visit occurred shortly after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine.
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