The analysis and speculation has run rampant concerning who the Democrats can find in 2020 to successfully counteract Donald Trump. Traditional politicians all failed in 2016, including in the primary and the general election. Democrats are seriously looking outside the typical avenues for a candidate and one recent name floating around is that of Oprah Winfrey. During the 2008 campaign, Oprah dipped her toe deeper into politics by actually campaigning with Barack Obama and holding a handful of rallies. Obama probably didn’t even need the help at the time, but it was a way for Oprah to get a taste of the campaign trail.
Newsweek reports on the idea of Oprah as the 2020 Democratic nominee:
In the NY Post column, Podhoretz praised Winfrey’s debut on CBS news program 60 Minutes last Sunday, in which she presided over a politically-charged debate between Michigan voters, both Democrats and Republicans.
“Listening, asking, speaking without judgment, trying to find common ground—it was a superb performance by Oprah, and I use the word “performance” advisedly,” wrote Podhoretz.
The columnist continued that should Winfrey opt to run in 2020, she would be a viable candidate to challenge President Donald Trump.
“America is discarding old approaches in politics. Democrats will have to do the same to match the mood to the moment,” Podhoretz reasoned.
“And that’s where Oprah Winfrey comes in. She is the mirror image of Trump, but more so. Of course, she’s female and he’s male; she’s America’s generous aunt and he’s America’s crazy uncle.” [Emphasis added]
America’s lovable Aunt versus America’s crazy Uncle? That sounds like a Presidential race made for television! I mean, how can you beat 2016 in terms of drama and entertainment aside from having two TV personalities battle it out for over a year?
What’s more, Oprah herself even promoted the article on her twitter feed:
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) September 28, 2017
The game changed when Donald Trump won the Republican nomination. Everyone beyond everyone said it wouldn’t happen, and then it did. This has opened the door to numerous non-politicians to explore the possibility of running for office. The other big names floating around for 2020 are that of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, and former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz.
Imagine the Democratic primary debate stage where Oprah Winfrey is standing next to Bernie Sanders while the two argue over how best to defeat Donald Trump. That is the primary we all deserve after witnessing 2016.
Following Donald Trump’s victory last November, Oprah tweeted out this photo with a message after seeing the President-Elect sitting down with President Obama:
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) November 10, 2016
Oprah explained at the time:
“I couldn’t breathe after the election,” she said. But seeing Trump and Obama together at the White House gave her a renewed sense of optimism. “I was expecting tension, awkwardness, and strain. So when I saw them sitting together, I actually took a picture of the screen that said ‘President-elect Trump honored to meet Obama.’ And President Obama was being so gracious, and I heard Donald Trump say, ‘He’s a good man.’ I heard Donald Trump say, ‘I’m going to be seeking his counsel.’ I literally went [deep breath], I can breathe now,” Winfrey said.
Since that time, her feelings have changed on President Trump, but she hasn’t been a stranger to politics. She could self-fund her campaign easily if needed, as could the other billionaires on the list of possible 2020 Democratic candidates.