As the 2022 midterm elections draw closer, candidates hoping to garner votes are making their case before voters.
While some explain their plans and platforms, others rely on familiar rhetoric. Most Republicans are sticking to what works.
To that end, Pennsylvania GOP Senate candidate Mehmet Cengiz Öz has been beating the drum of xenophobic, racist scare tactics about a nonexistent border crisis.
The rhetoric appealed to White nationalists, White supremacists, Christian nationalists and others who espoused the Great Replacement conspiracy theory in 2016, propelling Donald Trump to an electoral college victory.
However Trump lost the 2016 popular vote nationwide and carried Pennsylvania by less than 1%.
In 2020, the White nationalist rhetoric, "lock her up" and "build the wall" chants had lost their lustre and Trump was defeated in Pennsylvania by Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
So will the same rhetoric that failed in 2020 work in 2022?
That's unclear, but one thing isn't working for Oz—his in-laws' Pennsylvania address.
Oz—born in Ohio to Turkish immigrant parents—maintained a residence in New Jersey. While Oz largely chooses to ignore his own border issues, others are all too happy to remind him.
California Democratic Representative Eric Swalwell quote tweeted Oz's Biden border bashing and asked:
"The border crisis of you sneaking into Pennsylvania from New Jersey?"
Swalwell was not alone in taking the opportunity to dunk on Oz.
Oz is set to face Pennsylvania Lt. Governor, Democrat John Fetterman, in November.
If elected in the 2022 midterms, Oz would be the first Muslim to serve in the United States Senate and the first to serve in Congress as a Republican.
An estimated net worth exceeding $100 million would also make him one of the wealthiest members of Congress.
A dual citizen of the United States and Turkey, Oz served in the Turkish Army in the 1980's to maintain Turkish citizenship.
Oz stated in March 2022 he would forego certain security clearances—provided to Senators with access to information which affects national security—in order to keep his dual citizenship with Turkey.