“The first lady has let the president know that she likes Dr. Oz. And that matters,” said a top Republican familiar with the conversation.
“But this isn’t just about what Melania wants,” the source added. “There are a lot of Melanias out there. There are a lot of women, in whose living room and bedroom TVs Dr. Oz has been for a decade. They have a very personal relationship with Dr. Oz.”
Melania Trump’s supposed interest in Oz could prove crucial in the tight and already-contentious Pennsylvania Senate race, NBC News notes. Former President Donald Trump has said he plans to make another one of his valuable endorsements in PA, after his first choice Sean Parnell dropped out in the wake of domestic abuse allegations, and Melania’s opinion might carry great weight.
Meanwhile, Fox host Sean Hannity, who also “frequently speaks to the former president,” recently backed Oz on his radio show, writes NBC News.
Even with these purported endorsements, however, Oz’s main opponent in the primary — ex-hedge fund executive David McCormick — “has a bevy of Trump advisers and influential figures working in his campaign and super PAC,” including Dina Powell, a former Trump administration official, NBC News notes. Both Oz and McCormick are running to replace retiring Republican Sen. Pat Toomey, as are a number of other candidates.
Just “don’t underestimate the influence of the first lady,” said a second Republican source, who reportedly often speaks with the former president. “She normally doesn’t weigh in, but she has here. And that matters.” Read more at NBC News.