WASHINGTON – Television and movie star Oprah Winfrey put an end to the speculation of recent weeks and ruled out running for president in 2020, according to an interview published on Thursday in In Style magazine.
“I’ve always felt very secure and confident with myself in knowing what I could do and what I could not. And so it’s not something that interests me. I don’t have the DNA for it,” said the popular talk show host when asked about a possible presidential candidacy for the Democratic Party.
The rumors about a potential presidential run began circulating after the emotional speech Winfrey gave on Jan. 7 at the Golden Globes gala, in which she lambasted the sexual harassment of women amid the wave of complaints against powerful and influential Hollywood figures, including producer Harvey Weinstein.
However, the 63-year-old Winfrey’s remarks gained traction far beyond the movie world and were interpreted by many – perhaps in a classic case of wishful thinking, if nothing else – as a declaration of political aspirations.
“A new day is on the horizon,” Winfrey said in her Golden Globes remarks after receiving the honorary Cecil B. DeMille award, referring to the tidal wave of public opinion against sexual harassment.
“And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women ... and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say, ‘Me too’ again,” she said, referring to the slogan being used by women who have found themselves to be victims of sexual harassment and/or abuse.
Actress Meryl Streep said that Winfrey had “launched a rocket” during the gala. “I want her to run for president. ... I don’t think she had any intention (of declaring). But now she doesn’t have a choice.”
CNN then reported that Winfrey was “actively” considering a Democratic presidential run, while her longtime partner Stedman Graham told the Los Angeles Times that “It’s up to the people. ... She would absolutely do it.”
But with her In Style interview remarks, Winfrey seemed to put an end to the question, and in recent weeks President Donald Trump had said that he did not believe she would run although if she did, he would easily win re-election.