Dr. Mehmet Oz, a Republican millionaire best known for pushing conspiracy theories and endorsing unproven products and non-scientific advice, was criticized after he blamed Democratic President Joe Biden for the price of groceries and complained a $6 jar of salsa was too expensive.
A video posted to social media shows Oz–whose recent financial disclosure puts his wealth at over $400 million–shopping in a supermarket for ingredients for crudité and complaining the $20 total for those ingredients is too high.
You can hear what he said in the video below.
Oz recorded the video at "Wegner's," possibly meaning Wegman's, and spoke directly to the camera:
"I'm doing some grocery shopping, I'm at Wegner's and my wife wants some vegetables for crudité. Right?"
"So, here's a broccoli. That's two bucks, well, that's a ton of broccoli there. There's some asparagus. That's $4. Carrots. That's four more dollars."
"That's $10 of vegetables there, and then we need some guacamole. That's $4 more."
The video veered into outright comedy once he complained about the price of salsa and name-dropped Biden:
"She loves salsa, yeah, salsa there. $6? Must be a shortage of salsa. Guys, that's $20 for crudite, and this doesn't include the tequila. I mean, that's outrageous."
"We got Joe Biden to thank for this."
Oz's video comes as many Americans continue to feel the impacts of inflation at the grocery store and at the gas pump. With inflation running high, the Federal Reserve has announced plans to raise interest rates in an effort to "pump the brakes" on the economy.
While many Americans believe the government isn't doing enough to reduce inflation and address supply chain disruptions, the President, no matter who they are, does not have the power to curb inflation. Nor does the White House control demographic or technological changes that can affect an economy's direction.
Though presidential reputations tend to, as The New York Times once so aptly observed, "rise or fall with gross domestic product," a president's economic record is mostly up to chance, "highly dependent on the dumb luck of where the nation is in the economic cycle."
The video did Oz no favors and he was summarily mocked.
Oz's efforts to blame President Biden for the price of groceries offers further indication of how he is fashioning his political aspirations, which generated headlines in November 2021 after he announced he would run in the 2022 Senate election in Pennsylvania as a Republican to succeed Republican Pat Toomey, who is retiring.
Last month, the Biden administration fired Oz from his post on the President's Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition, saying that the decision was made because it is against the administration's policy to have federal candidates sit on presidential councils.
Oz lashed out afterward, claiming that his firing was politically motivated, and vowed that "The Woke Left will not silence or stop me from being a bold, conservative voice in the U.S. Senate."