Dr. Mehmet Oz, host of “The Dr. Oz Show” and a U.S. Senate candidate in Pennsylvania, is being accused of refusing to clearly state when he believes life begins and of “shamelessly flip-flopping” on the abortion issue.
“I’m pro-life,” Oz, who would be the first Muslim elected to the Senate, repeatedly said during an appearance Wednesday on Fox News “Primetime.” He also offered the caveat that his stance comes with three exceptions: rape, incest, and the life of the mother.
Host Will Cain pressed the popular TV doctor on the issue, asking what he believes, “as both a doctor and a senatorial candidate,” about “when life begins” and when the legal line should be drawn on abortion.
Listen to today’s podcast and subscribe:
“As a doctor, I appreciate the sanctity of life. And, for that reason, I’m strongly pro-life, with the three exceptions I’ve mentioned,” Dr. Oz said. “That’s how I would vote.”
Cain, though, pressed again, asking, “When does that life begin?”
In that moment, an ardent pro-lifer would generally deliver a response indicating belief that life begins at conception, but Oz took a more wordy and indistinct approach.
“You know, I get it. If I’m pro-life, then it’s a decision that comes back to the sanctity of when you think life does begin,” he said. “And I believe it begins when you’re in the mother’s womb.”
When Cain noted a baby is in the womb for the entirety of nine months — a fairly long timeframe — Oz vaguely added, “Life’s already started when you’re in your mother’s womb.”
Again, he avoided stating a specific point. Watch the exchange unfold:
Fox News host Will Cain grills U.S. Senate candidate Dr. Oz (R-PA) on what his political beliefs are on key conservative issues. pic.twitter.com/g8FU1NtGQC— Jason Rantz on KTTH Radio (@jasonrantz) December 16, 2021
Oz’s avoidance of saying “at conception” captured quite a bit of attention and reaction.
Fellow GOP senatorial candidate Jeff Bartos offered a pointed response on Twitter, taking aim at his opponent by calling his values into question.
“Life begins at conception,” Bartos said. “This is what happens when your so-called ‘values’ end at the teleprompter.”
Life begins at conception. This is what happens when your so-called “values” end at the teleprompter. https://t.co/r0X4hNTf1L— Jeff Bartos (@jeff_bartos) December 16, 2021
Numerous critics also took to social media to call Oz a “R.H.I.N.O” (a “Republican in Name Only”), while others questioned his sincerity. Despite the sudden reaction, this isn’t the first time questions have emerged.
Earlier this month, The Daily Beast pointed out past statements that purportedly show what the outlet calls a “shameless flip-flop on abortion” at the hands of Oz.
At the center of the dispute are comments Oz made during a 2019 appearance on the “Breakfast Club.”
The now-candidate then specifically spoke out about his concern over an Alabama law that would have made abortion practically illegal, saying he was “worried” about it. Oz also pushed back against the belief that the heart of an unborn baby beats at six weeks, likening it, instead, to electrical impulses.
“I wouldn’t want anyone in my life to have an abortion,” he said, though he seemed to dismiss crackdowns on abortion early on in a pregnancy, and appeared to express support for protecting lives once an unborn baby is viable and can live outside the womb on his or her own.
Oz said at the time the issue is tough, though he pushed back on those who seek restrictions based on the belief that at “the moment of conception, you’ve got life.” If that’s the case, he wondered why restrictions wouldn’t start even earlier than six weeks.
We’ll leave you with his comments at the 25-minute mark:
***As the number of voices facing big-tech censorship continues to grow, please sign up for Faithwire’s daily newsletter and download the CBN News app, developed by our parent company, to stay up-to-date with the latest news from a distinctly Christian perspective.***