The Oprah Winfrey presidency rumors started out as a joke—literally. On the Golden Globes stage, Seth Meyers called out the queen of talk in his opening monologue. Winfrey, seated in the front row to accept the Globes’ prestigious Cecil B. DeMille Award, laughed as Meyers said the following.
“Oprah, while I have you, in 2011 I told some jokes about our current president at the White House Correspondents Dinner — jokes about how he was unqualified to be president — and some have said that night convinced him to run. So if that’s true, I just want to say: Oprah, you will never be president. You do not have what it takes!”
If Meyers’ joke wasn’t enough to get people talking, Oprah’s powerful Golden Globes acceptance speech, in which she declared that “a new day is on the horizon,” was. Many people now believe that Oprah Winfrey has taken one step toward an official presidential campaign, especially since her longtime partner, Stedman Graham, told a Los Angeles Times reporter Winfrey would “absolutely” run, but ultimately it was “up to the people.”
Oprah’s bestie, Gayle King, found herself in the unfortunate spot of having to spin the Oprah for President story when her CBS This Morning colleagues grilled her on the topic. King admitted that Oprah “is intrigued by the idea” but that she is not “actively considering” a run for president.
“She loves this country and would like to be of service in some way,” Gayle added, careful not to say too much.
While Oprah Winfrey is not talking, plenty of celebrities are. Everyone from 95-year-old Carl Reiner to a 10-year-old child star has weighed in on the possibility of an Oprah presidency. That’s right, little Mackenzie Hansciscak, who plays the littlest Kate on This Is Us, took to Twitter to plead, “And please O please… @Oprah for President!”
Lady Gaga, Adam Lambert, Alyssa Milano, and many more also made it clear that if Oprah Winfrey were to run on the 2020 presidential ticket, they’d be with her.
Oprah for President in 2020? Think about it, I am.
— carl reiner (@carlreiner) January 9, 2018
Oprah for president? She’s got my vote.
— Lady Gaga (@ladygaga) January 8, 2018
Oprah for President.
— ADAM LAMBERT (@adamlambert) January 9, 2018
Last night @Oprah made it clear that she’s here, and she’s committed. Whether or not she decides to run for President in 2020, hers is the kind of passionate, eloquent, and inclusive voice that once transcended class & color to unify Democrats on both coasts and places in between
— Ken Olin (@kenolin1) January 8, 2018
How in the world can anyone NOT be affected by @Oprah when she gives an impassioned speech! That is a leader who inspires all, women,men,young and old and people across the spectrum of color and background! SHE may not want to be our president but THAT is who we need to lead us!
— Rena Sofer (@RenaSofer) January 8, 2018
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) January 8, 2018
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 8, 2018
During an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Meryl Streep also addressed the potential for Oprah as POTUS, even suggesting that she thinks Hollywood should just take over the White House.
“Oprah launched her presidential campaign, I think,” Streep said.”Somebody from the stage [mentioned] Tom Hanks [as vice president], and he seemed ready to go. That would be a pretty good ticket. … You could just keep it in Hollywood, you know, you could have The Rock as the joint chief of staff, Harrison Ford running defense.”
But not everyone agrees that Oprah has what it takes to run the country. Late night host Stephen Colbert said this of Winfrey’s potential presidential bid.
“She’s reasonable enough to consider the possibility that maybe being a billionaire TV star doesn’t necessarily qualify you to have the launch codes.”
In addition, Roseanne Barr, who launched her own presidential campaign in 2012, flat out said she would be a better president than Oprah Winfrey.
“Of course I love Oprah like everybody else, but you know what? I think it was time for us as a country to shake things up and try something different,” Barr told TCA reporters, according to Deadline. “I think I would be a better president than Oprah…and possibly even President Trump.”
And it’s no surprise that Bill O’Reilly had some harsh words for Winfrey—and the Democratic Party in general.
“She skillfully played the male misconduct card, rallying women who feel marginalized, then pivoted into praising the press as protectors of the realm.”
As for the current President of the United States, Donald Trump doesn’t seem to have any worries about Oprah Winfrey stealing his throne. Trump, who once suggested that he would love to have Oprah as his vice president, told reporters in the Cabinet Room that he has no fear of the media mogul.
“Yeah, I’ll beat Oprah,” Trump said. “Oprah would be a lot of fun. I know her very well. I did one of her last shows… I like Oprah. I don’t think she’s going to run.”