If you’ve spent the last few weeks hoping and praying that we may at some point see Oprah in the White House, sorry to crush your dreams, but the queen herself says it’s not happening. In a recent interview with InStyle, the icon addressed rumours about the presidential run people had assumed was inevitable. Turns out, it’s not.
“I’ve always felt very secure and confident with myself in knowing what I could do and what I could not do. And so it’s not something that interests me,” Oprah told the magazine, “I don’t have the DNA for it.” So there you go, folks. It’s not happening. She added that while it might be what the world wants right now, it’s not necessarily a good move for her.
“Gayle—who knows me as well as I know myself practically—has been calling me regularly and texting me things, like a woman in the airport saying, ‘When’s Oprah going to run?’ Oprah shared, “So Gayle sends me these things, and then she’ll go, ‘I know, I know, I know! It wouldn’t be good for you—it would be good for everyone else.'”
Oprah 2020? “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,” March cover star @Oprah tells @LauraBrown99. https://t.co/iszoxFeChp pic.twitter.com/FkrWJt9lQn
— InStyle (@InStyle) January 25, 2018
She makes a good point. When discussing a potential Oprah run on Anderson Cooper 360, CNN analyst Van Jones made the argument that winning the presidency would be “a demotion from queen of the universe.” It’s true. Running would divide people along party lines in a way Oprah has never advocated for. It would mean getting her hands dirty in political debates and having people pick her apart in the way they did Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the last election. Do we really want to put Oprah through that? She deserves better. She IS better.
According to recent polling, Oprah would have beat the current president in 2020 by a considerable margin (despite his claims to the contrary) but people are taking the rumour-squashing relatively well. It would seem that a lot of people understand the real-world implications of having another celebrity run for president when the position should probably be filled by an actual politician who knows how to do the job. Wow, Twitter, this is awfully mature of you.
I wish Oprah had said, “in 2020, I’m ready to have someone in the White House who has made a career in politics & has worked their whole lives to be in the White House. Someone who knows what they’re doing.” https://t.co/au7ddBn2Nj
— Justin Mikita (@JustinMikita) January 25, 2018
Oprah had to tell InStyle magazine she’s not running for president, even though she’s been saying that for 25 years, because your faves wrote whole thinkpieces based on nothing but a minutes long acceptance speech.
— Ashley C. Ford (@iSmashFizzle) January 25, 2018
I love Oprah, but I’m glad she is putting the speculation to rest now, instead of later. Now if we could just Duane “The Rock” Johnson to do the same.
— Amy L Marckel (@xyam70) January 25, 2018
I respect it. As good as Oprah is, I feel like the term “presidency” doesn’t suit her… I want Michelle in 2020. Obama the First Lady…
— yensaeyak (@yensaeyak) January 25, 2018
Yeah. Here’s an interesting idea – how about, from now on, we just let actors act, and politicians run for office…mmkay?
— Rebel Spy (@Starwind2020) January 25, 2018
Oprah might not be running for president, but that doesn’t mean she’s not going to be out there fighting the good fight. She told InStyle how inspired she is right now by the way people — particularly women — are standing up for social justice causes. One that is particularly close to her heart is the Me Too/Time’s Up movement.
“Everything that’s happened has brought us to this point in time. We’ve been working our way through a lot of repressed pain, anger, shame, and disappointment. And we weren’t honoring our own voices,” she said, “Now we’re here, and it took Harvey Weinstein to burst that door wide open. But Harvey wasn’t the first one. It was Bill Cosby before him, and Bill O’Reilly before him. It’s just fascinating to me because I always try to look at things … in a macro way, like, ‘What’s really going on here?’
“If it had only been Harvey Weinstein in that moment, it probably wouldn’t have happened,” she continued, “But it compounded, and people are hearing it. Finally everyone has to start paying attention. It’s cracked open. It takes a lot for people to wake up and see things differently than they’ve seen them before.” Oprah says the next step is to take this cultural shift and turn it into something concrete.
“You can see you’re not alone. We don’t have to turn our heads to pretend something isn’t happening in order to keep going,” she said, “And now we have amongst ourselves actresses, producers, directors, and people in business discussing how we can create a reporting system so that everybody feels supported.
“At another time in our collective consciousness the story could’ve gone away—two weeks, and it’s over. And I think that’s what probably some of these guys thought they could do,” she added, “So I think the fact that it’s not over—it’s not done. Women are courageous and will continue to speak.”