TV and entertainment mogul Oprah Winfrey told InStyle magazine that she does not have the “the DNA” for a presidential run, putting a damper on talk that has swirled since her viral speech at the Golden Globe awards earlier this month.
“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,” Winfrey said in an interview published online Thursday.
Winfrey’s celebrity has been seen by some in political circles as a possible match for the bombast and heated rhetoric that President Donald Trump brought to the campaign trail in 2016 and is certain to lean on again in 2020.
Winfrey’s speech, delivered as she received the Cecil B. DeMille award for lifetime achievement, touched on many of the racial and gender issues that Trump’s presidency has touched off or escalated. Trump’s first year in office has seen increased discussion of sexual misconduct and the way women are treated in the workplace and more broadly within American culture.
Gayle King, “CBS This Morning” anchor and a close friend of Winfrey’s, said in the days after the Golden Globes that she thought the former daytime TV host was “intrigued” by the idea but was not actually considering it.
“I actually saw a mug the other day ... I thought it was a cute mug. All you need is a mug and some campaign literature and a T-shirt,” Winfrey told In Style. “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?” 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.’ I met with someone the other day who said that they would help me with a campaign. That’s not for me.”