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Dr. Mehmet Oz's Senate run has just begun, but the women of The View are already campaigning against him. On Wednesday morning, just one day after Dr. Oz announced that he would be running as a Republican in Pennsylvania, the co-hosts tore into the TV doctor for embracing the GOP position on the COVID-19 vaccine, mask mandates, and efforts to keep school-age children safe amid the pandemic. The panel was united in their criticism, but Whoopi Goldberg was by far the harshest as she called out Oz for blasting elites on Fox News. "You don't have the right to talk to people like this!" said the longtime moderator. "Talking about elites and who isn't elite — dude, we live in a similar area!"
Whoopi's big day of Dr. Oz talk actually began in the segment before, as The View's teleprompter cued her up to preview the discussion before a commercial break. "When we come back, we will — oh, who cares about this?" she asked, in what's sure to become an iconic Whoopi-ism. "We're having a great conversation. When you hear the next topic and why I'm being rushed, it will knock you out."
After the commercial break, Whoopi gave in and introduced a Hot Topic about Dr. Oz's Senate run and his Tuesday night interview on Hannity. "The TV Dr. Mehmet Oz wants to be the next senator of Pennsylvania," she said, promoting groans from the audience. "Let me close my lips."
"What happened to him?" asked Joy Behar, after a clip of Oz's Fox News interview played on screen. "He's gone over to the dark side. Oh my god."
When Sunny Hostin brought up Oz's "turn" during COVID and his claim that reopening schools during the pandemic will only lead to "a total mortality" of 2-3%, the co-hosts really went in. "There's an interview I did on another show with him where he measured my BMI. And he said to me, 'You're underweight,'" recalled Behar. "So, at that moment I don't trust him. You know, I know the truth!"
"He said in that interview, 'Elites with yards told those without yards to stay inside, where the virus was more likely to spread,'" said Sara Haines. "He keeps speaking of pushing back against elites, but I'm curious what his definition is, as a New York City doctor — what's an elite if you aren't an elite?"
Behar and Hostin then pointed out that Oz "seems to be a nice person" one-on-one ("He's very, very, personally, a doll," said Behar), but his embrace of the GOP appears to run counter to that. "Would a nice person sacrifice people's children?" asked Hostin.
DR. OZ JOINS PENNSYLVANIA SENATE RACE: Following weeks of speculation, Dr. Mehmet Oz officially declared his candidacy for Pennsylvania’s open U.S. Senate seat – the co-hosts react. https://t.co/3RQsOvYXs5 pic.twitter.com/ZbqPmFFRpd— The View (@TheView) December 1, 2021
"Yes, they will! Lots of people have done that. We've seen governors suggest it, we've seen people suggest it," replied Whoopi. "Listen, you either get that this is about other people's health — this is not whether you like the idea of a mandate, getting the shot — that has nothing to do with it. Kids going back to school deserve to be safe, and if you as a doctor and a physician can't see that, then you're not somebody I want to vote for, no matter how much I like you!"
Elsewhere on The View... Awkwardness engulfed the table after Joy Behar confused Rita Moreno with Chita Rivera, the original Anita in Broadway's West Side Story. When Behar insisted that she saw Moreno "on stage" in the original production, Moreno insisted that she saw Chita Rivera, instead, as she "never did it on stage," only on film. "Oh! I'm just as confused as everybody," said Behar, after both Whoopi chimed in to say that Moreno is correct.
Because Rita Moreno is Rita Moreno, she was kind about Behar's mistake. "Chita and I are locked at the hip whether we like it or not," said the actress. "She was fabulous."
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Claire Spellberg Lustig is the TV Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.