Oprah Winfrey on Thursday fuelled speculation that she could challenge President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, tweeting out a link to a New York Post column that called her “Democrats’ best hope for 2020.”
“@jpodhoretz Thanks for your VOTE of confidence!” she tweeted.
The column, by conservative writer John Podhoretz, lauded Winfrey for her debut segment as a special correspondent for CBS’ “60 Minutes,” in which she sat down with a panel of Trump critics and supporters in Michigan.
Winfrey probed the participants on issues like the Trump-Russia investigations, Trump’s comments after a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, and the ban Trump recently announced on transgender military service members.
The segment, according to Podhoretz, showed how deftly Winfrey can bridge political and cultural divides, “finding a tone appropriate for the moment without being heavy-handed.”
“If any figure in the United States bears watching over the next couple of years as our political culture continues the radical transformation that led to the election of Donald Trump, it’s Oprah,” Podhoretz wrote. “I believe she’s uniquely positioned, should she wish to commit herself, to seek the Democratic nomination for president and challenge Trump in 2020.”
It’s hardly the first time Oprah’s presidential aspirations have prompted speculation — and she has offered up mixed signals.
During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter in June, Winfrey shot down any notion that she would make a White House bid, vowing, “I will never run for public office.”
Yet just months earlier, in March, Winfrey conceded in a Bloomberg TV interview that Trump’s election had made her think differently about her own prospective chances.
When asked by Bloomberg’s David Rubenstein about her plans for 2020, she said, ” I never considered the question even a possibility.” Yet when Rubenstein noted that “it’s clear you don’t need government experience to be elected president of the United States,” Winfrey agreed.
“That’s what I thought,” she said. “I thought, ‘Oh, gee, I don’t have the experience, I don’t know enough.’ And now I’m thinking, ‘Oh.'”
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