Oprah Winfrey has killed off presidential campaign chatter once and for all, in her first interview on the matter conducted after her rousing Golden Globes speech.
‘I am actually humbled by the fact that people think I could be the leader of the free world, but it’s just not in my spirit,’ Winfrey said in an interview with 60 Minutes Overtime. ‘It’s not in my DNA.’
Winfrey, herself a 60 Minutes special contributor, said if she had been thinking about running for president seriously, she would have walked away from her more journalistic or ‘conversationalist’ role.
Oprah Winfrey (right) told 60 Minutes that running for president was not in her ‘DNA,’ though also suggested during the interview that she had thought about it briefly after being approached by a number of potential backers and donors
This Sunday a package featuring Winfrey will air on the CBS program as she sits down with a group of Michigan voters, half of whom voted for President Trump.
Winfrey first gathered this group of 14 together in September and her new interview with the roundtable will show how their political views have evolved.
In the interim, Winfrey started getting political buzz, after she delivered a ‘Me Too’-themed speech at the Golden Globes, that a politician could have given on the stump.
Winfrey told 60 Minutes that she was ‘stunned’ that she suddenly was being named as someone who could run for the highest office in the land.
‘I was just trying to give a good speech,’ the talk show host said. ‘I was looking for a way to express what was going on in this moment in terms of gender and class and race.’
‘I cared about landing that speech in the room,’ Winfrey added.
What looked to be a game of telephone between her long-term partner Stedman Graham and a Los Angeles Times reporter added fuel to the fire, as Graham was first quoted as saying that Winfrey ‘would absolutely’ run for the White House if prompted by the American people.
Gayle King, Winfrey’s best friend and co-host of CBS This Morning, later claimed on her show that Graham had misheard the question, though his statement had seemed to indicate a straight-forward yes.
Two other unnamed sources told CNN that Winfrey was ‘actively thinking’ about jumping in.
In two other interviews, Winfrey said it wasn’t going to happen, though those Q&As were conducted before the Golden Globes.
After the awards show, Winfrey said she was inundated with offers of political and financial help.
‘I had a lot of wealthy men calling, telling me that they would run my campaign and raise $1 billion for me,’ Winfrey told 60 Minutes. ‘I think that when you have that many people whose opinions you value coming at you, it’s worthy of thinking about.’
But Winfrey said she hadn’t heard from a higher power, the one voice who might compel her to get involved.
‘And wouldn’t I know? Because if God actually wanted me to run, wouldn’t God kinda tell me?’ she mused. ‘And I haven’t heard that.’