Whether you support Donald Trump or not, if someone traveled back in time to a few years ago and told you that he would become President, you probably would not have believed them. But it happened, and now there is a new era of politics. Now, all it takes is a brief joke from Seth Meyers at the Golden Globes and a rousing speech by Oprah (in which she didn’t mention any plans to enter politics) to spur an avalanche of social media support for this #Oprah2020 campaign.
In June of 2017 Oprah Winfrey adamantly stated that she would never run for public office, but she hasn’t been nearly as firm in response to the growing calls for her 2020 campaign. One friend said she is “very intrigued.” Another said that “If she set out to do it, she’d win.” And her partner, Stedman Graham, claimed that she “would absolutely do it.” Oprah herself has not given an answer either way. On an interview for Bloomberg TV, she explained how Trump winning the election led her to realize that you don’t actually need any political experience to be elected to the highest office of the United States. She then said, “And now I’m thinking, ‘Oh.’”
For a long time, Oprah tried to stay out of the touchy topic of politics on her talk show, but then publicly endorsed Barack Obama in 2008 and then Hillary Clinton in 2016. So it would seem that even if she’s not seriously considering a run, it’s at the very least on her mind.
Opinions range from those who are ecstatic and basically throwing themselves forward to do whatever they can to help Oprah’s campaign, to those who are disgusted by the idea of another celebrity in the Oval Office. There are even those who think Oprah is too good to be President. Appearing on CNN, BET host Robin Thede argued that “We don’t deserve Oprah as President.” Thede claimed that Oprah is “too smart” and not enough of a “narcissist,” comparing her to Michelle Obama, who people have also wanted to run for President.
While all of this support for Oprah may make it seem that we’ve got a new President on our hands, the numbers tell a different story. A poll found that 59% of registered voters don’t want Oprah to run for President. In an opinion piece for Vice, Eve Peyser gave a few reasons. She argued that Trump’s first year of presidency should have shown us that a celebrity is too unskilled and unpredictable in office. Plus, aside from knowing that she is fairly progressive, we don’t really know where Oprah stands on many political issues.
Whether or not we see Oprah on the ballot in 2020 (by which time many of us will be legal voters), the serious consideration of her presidential run has shown that celebrities running for the White House is starting to become a trend.
– Beatrice Naujalyte
New York Post – Voters don’t actually want Oprah to run for president: poll
Washington Post – Oprah for president in 2020? Here’s everything you need to know.
Categories: Current Events