Donald Trump has insulted Oprah Winfrey and challenged the TV star to challenge him in the 2020 presidential election.
The president tweeted about Winfrey late Sunday night after watching her host a “60 Minutes” panel discussion in which she addressed the problems with the national discourse. “One year into Donald Trump’s presidency, Americans remain divided, often unwilling to listen to what the other side has to say,” she said as she introduced partisan panelists from Grand Rapids, Michigan.
“Polls are showing that respect for the United States is eroding around the world. Do you care what the world thinks of the United States?” Winfrey asked at one point. “There have been some members of Congress, including Republicans, questioning his stability and fitness for office. What do you think of that, and do you believe he has the temperament to be president?” she also asked. “Do you think the president is held to a different standard when it comes to this issue of sexual harassment?” ran another question.
Trump reacted by tweeting that Winfrey was “very insecure” and had asked “biased and slanted” questions.
“Hope Oprah runs so she can be exposed and defeated just like all of the others!” he concluded.
Some suggested Winfrey was soft-launching a presidential bid after her Golden Globes speech last month. In that speech, she defended the “under siege” press and spoke at length about sexual harassment and assault.
“For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dare speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up. Their time is up,” she said. Winfrey never directly mentioned Trump, although many women have accused him of sexual misconduct and the White House has accused them of lying.
However, despite many people’s desire for a high-profile challenger from the left, Winfrey has repeatedly denying being interested in a presidential bid.
“I am actually humbled by the fact that people think that I could be a leader of the free world, but it’s just not in my spirit, it’s not my DNA,” she said just a few days ago.
In 1999, when Trump was considering a presidential run on the Reform Party ticket, he told Larry King he would like Winfrey to be his running mate. “I love Oprah. Oprah would always be my first choice,” he said.
“If she’d do it, she’d be fantastic. She’s popular, she’s brilliant, she’s a wonderful woman,” Trump said.