Oprah Loves Obama but Won’t Campaign for Him in 2012

The former talk-show host says she needs to focus on her own flagging network, OWN.

Posted: 04/03/2012 12:17 PM EDT

A lot has changed since 2007, when Oprah Winfrey, then one of the most popular and powerful women in the nation, formally backed Barack Obama’s White House bid, her first-ever presidential endorsement. She also campaigned and hosted fundraisers for the less well-known senator.

 

Five years later, both have lost a little bit of their shine, and the former talk-show queen is prioritizing her struggling Oprah Winfrey Network over what could be a tight race for President Obama.

 

“I actually love our president and have the utmost respect for him and that office and what it takes to be there," Winfrey said on CBS’s Early Show. "I will not be out [on the campaign trail] because I'm trying to fix a network.”

 

Last month, the president thanked Winfrey at a fundraiser for her support over the years.

 

"And then, there is my good friend, Oprah, who very early on, when I was still running, just decided that she would support this guy with a name that nobody could pronounce," Obama said. "And just like books and skin cream, when Oprah decides she likes you, then other people like you, too."

 

BET Politics - Your source for the latest news, photos and videos illuminating key issues and personalities in African-American political life, plus commentary from some of our liveliest voices.

Videos You May Like

(Photo: Darren McCollester/Getty Images)

From Our Partners