Reality Check: Oprah Winfrey for president? How Sarah Palin paved the way
If there’s one thing that Oprah Winfrey and President Donald Trump share, it’s the ability to capture a news cycle.
Perhaps out of Twitter fatigue, the media has seized on Sunday night’s Golden Globe speech by Oprah as an omen of things to come.
"So, I want all the girls here watching here now to know that a new day is on the horizon."
If Oprah wasn’t considering a presidential run in 2020, she certainly appears to be now.
And yes, I’m calling her Oprah instead of Winfrey-- not out of familiarity, but because she’s so big I fear we’re all legally required to use her first name.
From her long-running talk show to her magazine and her cable TV network, the Oprah brand is synonymous with success and wealth-- a wealth estimated the equal of Donald Trump at $3 billion, give or take a hundred million.
Two years ago, the idea of a TV celebrity ascending to the highest level of politics was unthinkable. Not anymore.
Certainly not by Oprah, who was asked about a possible run in March of last year.
"I, though, oh gee I don’t have the experience. I don’t know enough. And now I’m thinking. Oh!”
I believe Oprah Winfrey could very well be elected president for one very obvious reason. Today, in this country, we value celebrity over experience.
And yes, I recognize that Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger, and a host of others have used their celebrity to their political advantage.
But, I believe it was Sarah Palin who first recognized that today, celebrity status alone is many times more valuable than political experience.
It was Palin who quit mid-term as governor to pursue celebrity in the form of book and speaking tours, along with reality TV.
She recognized she could elevate her brand more easily in front of a TV camera and a national audience than from a corner office in Juneau, Alaska.
And though it didn’t work out for her, she paved the way for Donald Trump.
Even though he made his fortune in real estate, he was only a contender because he was a TV star.
And when it comes to TV stars, there is none brighter than Oprah Winfrey.
Because you can’t be a populist without being popular.
And she’s already got her campaign slogan: You get a car! You get a car!
Does Oprah have the experience to be President? That question no longer has any meaning.
If celebrity is now the coin of the realm, I think she’d be unbeatable. That is until Kim Kardashian throws her hat in the ring.
John's opinions are his own and not necessarily those of Denali Media or its employees.
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