That now-infamous crudité shopping video that Dr. Mehmet Oz made to advertise his Pennsylvania U.S. Senate candidacy continues to pay big dividends ― for his Democratic opponent John Fetterman.
In addition, Oz’s use of a highfalutin term like “crudité,” as opposed to Fetterman’s suggestion of “veggie platter,” allowed his opponent to cast him as an out-of-touch elitist. The fact that Oz scrambled the names of two real-life grocery chains — Redner’s and Wegmans — to invent a nonexistent store called Wegner’s compounded the Donald Trump-endorsed candidate’s woes. A parody Twitter account for the fictional store namechecked Oz in its ribbing of the celebrity doctor.
How bad is the damage?
Well, when the conservative media outlet Newsmax interviewed Oz on Wednesday, anchor Shaun Kraisman asked about the “crudité” video rather than tossing softballs that would allow him bash Joe Biden and Fetterman.
“Is Dr. Oz relatable to the everyday hard-working Americans there in Pennsylvania?” asked Kraisman.
Oz responded to the question with a forced smile and some word salad.
“I rolled my sleeves up my whole life,” he said, dodging the question. “I’ve taken care of patients, saved lives, invented devices. I’ve started foundations where we take care of tens of thousands of teens around the country trying to help wherever I can. That’s what my life’s been about.”
Then he said his use of the word crudité was meant to be a joke.
“You know what I joke about? A crudité, which is a way of speaking about how ridiculous it is that you can’t even put vegetables on a plate in the middle of a campaign,” Oz said.
Oz also justified his invented grocery store name with a self-deprecating reference to his own parenting skills.
“Yeah. I was exhausted. Well, you’re campaigning 18 hours a day. I’ve gotten my kids’ names wrong as well,” he said. “I don’t think that’s a measure of someone’s ability to lead the commonwealth,” Oz said.
Senators, of course, represent the state in Washington. They don’t actually “lead the commonwealth.”
You can see Oz’s interview on Newsmax below, courtesy of the liberal PAC MeidasTouch.
Oh my god Dr. Oz couldn’t even go on Newsmax without being humiliated. pic.twitter.com/cENDkk7Ecx
— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) August 17, 2022
Of course, people on Twitter had thoughts.
on tv explaining what a crudité is,
campaign going great pic.twitter.com/UijvmH4rIa
— Brennan Murphy (@brenonade) August 17, 2022
how does this keep getting funnier https://t.co/DZTAJFrnXN
— Bill DiFilippo (@billdifilippo) August 17, 2022
Newsmax: Is Dr. Oz relatable to working class Pennsylvania voters?
Oz: Well who doesn’t forget the names of their kids every now and then? https://t.co/exTIeM5doi
— Jake Lahut (@JakeLahut) August 17, 2022
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.