The talk-show sage Oprah Winfrey has hinted in a new interview that President Trump’s lack of government experience had her rethinking whether she could someday lead the free world.
“So have you ever thought that, given the popularity you have — we haven’t broken the glass ceiling yet for women — that you could actually run for President and actually be elected?” philanthropist David Rubenstein asked on his Bloomberg Television show, prompting applause.
“I actually never thought that that was — I never considered the question even a possibility,” Winfrey replied. “I just thought, ‘Oh … oh.’”
“Right,” Rubenstein added. “Because it’s clear that you don’t need government experience to be the President of the United States.”
That’s what I thought,” she replied incredulously. “I thought, ‘Oh gee, I don’t have the experience, I don’t know enough.’ And now I’m thinking, ‘Oh. Oh.’”
Winfrey’s coy smile and cryptic replies stood in contrast to interviews she’d given over the last year. In January, for example, she exclaimed “Never!” when Stephen Colbert prodded her on presidential ambitions.
“Until this election year, I thought, ‘Wow, why do people say that? I have no qualifications to run,’” she told Kimmel, laughing. “I’m feeling pretty qualified. After this year, I’m feeling really qualified.”
Winfrey endorsed Hillary Clinton for President last year, but threw her first-ever political endorsement to former President Obama during the 2008 Democratic primary.
Trump memorably tossed Winfrey’s name around as a possible VP pick in 1999, when he briefly considered a Reform Party run for the Oval Office.
He reaffirmed his interest 16 years later after announcing his GOP presidential bid — telling George Stephanopoulos a Trump-Winfrey ticket would “win easily, actually” — but later said he hadn’t been serious.