Gayle King downplays chance of Oprah Winfrey running

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Oprah Winfrey’s best friend, Gayle King, is downplaying any suggestion that Winfrey might run for president. | AP Images

WASHINGTON — Oprah Winfrey’s best friend, Gayle King, is downplaying any suggestion that Winfrey might run for president.

King, a CBS host, says that Winfrey is “intrigued by the idea” of a presidential bid in 2020, but that after a long conversation with her friend the night before, she doesn’t see it happening.

“She loves this country and would like to be of service in some way. But I don’t think she’s actively considering it at this time,” King said.

“You always have the right to change her mind.”

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President Donald Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, is endorsing Oprah Winfrey’s message, if not a political future, in a recent tweet.

She wrote: “Just saw @Oprah’s empowering and inspiring speech at last night’s #GoldenGlobes. Let’s all come together, women & men, & say #TIMESUP! #UNITED.”

Actress Alyssa Milano and others quickly chimed in, pointing out that Ivanka Trump’s tweet doesn’t mention that her father faces accusations of sexual misconduct by several women.

Milano responded to Ivanka’s tweet: “Great! You can make a lofty donation to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund that is available to support your father’s accusers.”

The idea of bumper stickers reading “Oprah 2020” may be a liberal fantasy, but some Democratic Party activists are chattering about a Winfrey for president campaign anyway.

Winfrey’s impassioned speech Sunday night at the Golden Globes sparked talk about whether she might follow in the footsteps of another wildly wealthy media star who jumped into politics by campaigning for the highest office in the land, Donald Trump.

In receiving a lifetime achievement award from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Winfrey spoke of her humble upbringing and her childhood respect for civil rights heroes. But it was her support of women calling out sexual harassment that fueled talk among Democrats in states where presidential runs usually begin, Iowa and New Hampshire.

Last fall Winfrey dismissed the notion of running for president.

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