Oprah & Hillary Won’t Hit Campaign Trail for Obama
Oprah’s busy saving TV network and secretary of state must remain politically neutral.
Oprah Winfrey did something in 2007 that she never had before. She endorsed a candidate for president, fellow Chicagoan Barack Obama. The move alienated her from conservative viewers and led to claims that she only backed Obama because he was black. She defended her choice by explaining, “I am not voting for Barack Obama because he’s black, I am voting for him because he’s brilliant.”
But this year don’t expect Ms. Winfrey to hit the campaign trail on Obama’s behalf. She and Hillary Clinton, who supported Obama after he clinched the Democratic nomination, will both be sitting out the series of rallies, fundraisers and other events leading up to the 2012 presidential election. Neither woman has fallen out with the president, however.
“I am 100 percent behind our president,” Winfrey recently told Politico. “I actually love our president and have the utmost respect for him and that office and what it takes to be there. I will not be out because I’m trying to fix [my] network.”
The Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) has struggled to find its footing among a glut of other cable networks aimed at women.
Clinton, who stumped for Obama after he defeated her in the 2008 presidential race, is forbidden to back a presidential candidate. Obama appointed her secretary of state, and the individual who fills the role is supposed to be politically neutral.
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Clinton, though, landed in hot water in February after she told a crowd in Tunisia that Obama would be a two-term president. She later explained of her departure from protocol, “Probably my enthusiasm for the president got a little out of hand.”