Oprah Winfrey got the Twitterverse all fired up on Thursday, September 28, when she sparked speculation that she may run for president of the U.S. in 2020.
The former talk show host, who told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this year, “I will never run for public office,” got fans hopes soaring when she retweeted a New York Post op-ed column titled “Democrats’ Best Hope for 2020: Oprah.”
“@jpodhoretz Thanks for your VOTE of confidence!” she commented to the op-ed’s writer, John Podhoretz.
Winfrey, 63, who was a strong supporter of former President Barack Obama, said in a March interview with Bloomberg Media’s David Rubenstein she’s never contemplated running for a political position but acknowledged that the election of Donald Trump changed the playing field.
“Have you ever thought that — given the popularity that you have — we haven’t broken the glass ceiling yet for women, that you could actually run for president and be elected?” Rubenstein asked the media mogul.
“I actually never considered the question, even the possibility,” she said, but Trump, who was elected without prior military or government experience, gave her pause.
Previously, “I thought, ‘Oh, gee, I don’t have the experience, I don’t know enough,’” said Winfrey, who had endorsed Trump’s opponent, Hillary Clinton, in 2016. “And now I’m thinking, ‘Oh.’”
Podhoretz wrote in his New York Post column that in order for the Democrats to beat Trump in 2020, they’re going to need “a grand, outsized fearless star whom Trump can neither intimidate nor outshine.”
He suggested that Winfrey’s ability to connect with people leaves her “uniquely positioned, should she wish to commit herself, to seek the Democratic nomination for president and challenge Trump in 2020.”
Several commenters on Winfrey’s tweet endorsed the idea, with one asking, “So will you accept the nomination?” while another wrote, “If she can win, let her run. We need a Democrat who can win. Full stop.”