Tuesday’s debate in Harrisburg, PA between John Fetterman and Dr. Mehmet Oz marked the first time the Pennsylvania Senate candidates met face to face. Oz has long accused Fetterman of hiding from a debate with him due to Fetterman’s medical condition.
In May 2021, Fetterman suffered an atrial fibrillation and a stroke. He was also diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, a condition where the heart muscle becomes weakened and enlarged. In Fetterman’s own words, he “almost died.”
Fetterman claims he has not suffered any cognitive damage and has been cleared by his doctor to continue his campaign for Pennsylvania’s Senate seat.
Despite Fetterman’s reassurances that he is completely healthy, he has largely avoided making campaign appearances since his stroke and has required interviews to be done using closed captioning technology which projects words onto a screen for Fetterman to read. This is necessary for Fetterman because he is unable to understand spoken words as a result of his stroke.
Fetterman’s first national TV interview with NBC News was largely criticized for his inability to speak clearly and his seeming inability to understand the questions posed to him by NBC News correspondent Dasha Burns. Burns stated it was not clear to her that Fetterman understood what she was saying when speaking with him prior to the start of her formal interview with closed captioning.
Those on the left lashed out at Fetterman’s critics, like Oz, calling them ablest and arguing Fetterman’s stroke should not prevent him from representing the state of Pennsylvania in D.C. as a senator. If Fetterman’s performance in Tuesday’s debate has told Pennsylvania voters anything, it is that Fetterman’s critics were correct. He is not healthy enough to represent Pennsylvania voters and Oz is the clear choice.
Fetterman struggles discussing fracking and other issues
One rather unusual thing about the leftist support for Fetterman is his opinion on fracking. Over the years, Fetterman has claimed both to support and oppose fracking. His most recent statements are in support of fracking, which is controversial in leftist spaces. Fetterman was asked to clarify his stance by Lisa Sylvester, a local reporter in Pennsylvania, during last Tuesday’s debate with Oz.
His response was truly incomprehensible apart from that he still supports fracking, which he repeated numerous times while he struggled to explain his rationale for breaking from the party line and supporting fracking. Fetterman’s answer is a sign of his inability to communicate clearly, which would be a necessity if Fetterman were to be Pennsylvania’s newest senator in D.C. Watch his answer here.
Oz was clear on the issues, including abortion
Fetterman’s answer on fracking was just one of many instances where the Senate candidate stumbled over his words and seemingly forgot what he was going to say as he was speaking. Oz meanwhile, was precise and persuasive with his arguments. A major strategy of the Democrat Party in elections all around the country is to fearmonger about the issue of abortion.
They say that Republicans will ban abortion nationally following the repeal of Roe v. Wade. While this is the goal of some Republicans, it is a gross misrepresentation of what the repeal of Roe v. Wade represents. What Roe represented was the federal government imposing itself on the state’s right to govern its own people.
Oz explained this by saying that a woman’s choice belongs to her and her doctor, but also to the people of the state who elect leaders to govern them. Oz emphasized this is called democracy and that this is something the Democrats want to take away from the people of Pennsylvania and other states throughout the country. Oz’s conciseness in his answer was clear to understand, unlike Fetterman’s answers, and cannot be misconstrued by Democratic fearmongers.
Debate could be decisive for Pennsylvania voters
For the majority of the campaign, Fetterman had a commanding lead over Oz. As the election on November 8th approaches, the gap between the candidates has shrunk considerably. Most recent aggregate polling has Fetterman up just 2.3% over Oz. Fetterman’s inability to speak clearly on the important issues for Pennsylvania voters might push undecided voters to Oz.
Fetterman himself seemingly admitted defeat after the election saying, “that debate wasn’t exactly easy.” Many first hand news reports are already showing that voters may have been swayed by Oz’s competence compared to Fetterman. One undecided voter, speaking to CNN, called the debate an embarrassment for Fetterman and said, “Pennsylvania is in deep trouble, if they vote for Fetterman…I had questions about Oz earlier, but after listening with him against Fetterman, it’s definitely Oz.”
If this voter is any indication of attitudes in Pennsylvania following Tuesday’s debate, Senate Republicans can expect Dr. Mehmet Oz to join them in D.C. next year.