Gage Skidmore / Flickr trump pointing...
Gage Skidmore / Flickr

Former reality TV star Donald Trump told reporters Tuesday that if talk show host and pop culture icon Oprah Winfrey ran for president he would beat her. This is a real thing in the American political and cultural scene, January in the Year of Our Lord 2018. Buzzfeed News:

“Yeah, I’ll beat Oprah,” he said in response to a White House pool reporter asking if he thought he would win a race against her.

“Oprah will be lots of fun,” Trump said. “I did one of her last shows. I like Oprah.”

“I don’t think she’s going to run,” he added.

For once Donald Trump might be right. Oprah has said in the past she would never run for “office of any kind.” (October 18, 2017)

Here are a few other comments Oprah made in the past about running for political office:

October 15, 2015: “Not in this lifetime.”

June 17th, 2016: “The one thing I know for sure, sure, sure is that I will never run for office.”

January 4, 2017: “Never!”

January 26, 2017: “Nope. Not my thing, not my thing.”

March 1, 2017: “I thought, ‘Oh, gee, I don’t have the experience, I don’t know enough.’ And now I’m thinking, ‘Oh.'”

June 13th, 2017: “I will never run for public office. That’s a pretty definitive thing.”

October 18, 2017: “There will be no running for office of any kind for me.”

January 7th, 2018: “It’s up to the people. She would absolutely do it.” — Stedman

     Additionally, Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks were on Ellen DeGeneres’ show Tuesday and they were all three endorsing an Oprah run, with Streep quipping, “Where do I send the check?” Streep has been by far the most vociferous proponent of Oprah’s run for the White House, telling the Washington Post the night of the Golden Globes

“She launched a rocket tonight. I want her to run for president,” Streep told The Post from the ballroom right after the show ended. “I don’t think she had any intention [of declaring]. But now she doesn’t have a choice.

Perhaps Streep is joking, but if so she doesn’t realize how much of her communication gets lost when reduced to writing. She was on Jimmy Kimmel’s show Monday night and saying things like, “We could have “The Rock” [actor Dwyane Johnson] as head of the Chiefs of Staff and Harrison Ford for Secretary of Defense.” Seeing her say these things on TV and reading them in print are two very different experiences.

This is not entertaining. With the advent of Donald Trump in the White House democracy is at its nadir. We need to concentrate on rescuing the republic, not fomenting more silliness and contributing to the de-professionalism of public service. This is irresponsible behavior on the part of these entertainers, who are automatically given the public podium due to their stature in the entertainment industry.

This is a travesty.

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