NBC News came right out and just said it:
Others took the lazy newsman’s route and put it in the form of a question, like The New York Times: “President Oprah? After the Golden Globes, Some Have a 2020 Vision.”
One wag even etched it into the world’s reference tool, Wikipedia, editing in an entry that read, “Oprah Winfrey basically announced her run for the presidency on Jan. 8, 2018, at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.” (As usual, the “fact” was wrong: It was Jan. 7.)
Nevertheless, anyone who watched Sunday night’s Golden Globes surely felt something stir in The Force when Oprah finished her nine-minute speech as she accepted the Cecil B. DeMille award for lifetime achievement.
Oprah, as she does, gave a stirring speech, this one weaving her own life experiences with those of pioneers like Sidney Poitier, Rosa Parks and Recy Taylor, while touching on the Hollywood sex scandal and the empowerment of women. But there was one moment that made any savvy viewer sit up a little straighter on their couch and say, “Oh yeah, she’s running.”
“So I want all the girls watching here and now to know that a new day — is — on — the — horizon,” she said, slowing down her delivery for the last four words, her voice rising, her fist punching the air just the way politicians always do.
During the ceremony, “Oprah Winfrey For President” was floating in the L.A. air, wafting through the Beverly Hills Hotel where the elite celebrities of Tinseltown had gathered to laud themselves after another year of raking in billions of dollars.
In his opening monologue, host Seth Meyers took credit for spurring Donald Trump to run in 2016, saying he dressed him down at a D.C. media party in 2011.
“So if that’s true, I just want to say: Oprah, you will never be president! You do not have what it takes! And Hanks! Where’s [Tom] Hanks? You will never be vice president! You are too mean and unrelatable!
“Now we just wait and see,” Meyers said to laughter.
And he’s exactly right. Hollywood — and the hardcore Left — would love nothing more than for Oprah to run in 2020. And Oprah — worth a whopping $3 billion — is just 63: She’d be younger moving into the White House than Trump was. Plus, what other world does she have to conquer? Everything she touches turns to gold, so why not give politics a spin?
Forget that she doesn’t know a thing about foreign policy. Trump didn’t (and it’s certainly arguable that neither did Barack Obama or George W. Bush, given their performances in that realm). She has “It.” Her speech was amazing not only for its power, but the fact that she delivered it extemporaneously (unless the text was scrolling on an unseen TelePrompter).
Would she actually do it? Her longtime partner Stedman Graham said yes. “It’s up to the people. She would absolutely do it.”
#Oprah2020 quickly started trending on Twitter, with several people pointing out she could just adopt Obama’s campaign logo, a big red, white and blue O.
For her own part, Oprah was asked after her rousing speech if she’d run for president. “She paused, cracking a sly smile. ‘Okaay!'” wrote the Los Angeles Times.
Read the full speech below.
In 1964, I was a little girl sitting on the linoleum floor of my mother’s house in Milwaukee, watching Anne Bancroft present the Oscar for best actor at the 36th Academy Awards. She opened the envelope and said five words that literally made history: “The winner is Sidney Poitier.” Up to the stage came the most elegant man I had ever seen. I remember his tie was white and, of course, his skin was black. And I’d never seen a black man being celebrated like that.
And I have tried many, many, many times to explain what a moment like that means to a little girl, a kid watching from the cheap seats, as my mom came through the door bone-tired from cleaning other people’s houses. But all I could do is quote and say that the explanation in Sidney’s performance in “Lilies of the Field”: Amen, amen. Amen, amen.
In 1982, Sidney received the Cecil B. DeMille Award right here at the Golden Globes, and it is not lost on me that at this moment there are some little girls watching as I become the first black woman to be given the same award. It is an honor and it is a privilege to share the evening with all of them and also with the incredible men and women who’ve inspired me, who’ve challenged me, who’ve sustained me and made my journey to this stage possible: Dennis Swanson, who took a chance on me for “A.M. Chicago,” Quincy Jones, who saw me on that show and said to Steven Spielberg, “Yes, she is Sofia in ‘The Color Purple,’” Gayle [King], who has been the definition of what a friend is, and Stedman [Graham], who has been my rock, just a few to name.
I’d like to thank the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn., because we all know that the press is under siege these days. But we also know that it is the insatiable dedication and the absolute truth that keeps us from turning a blind eye to corruption and injustice, to tyrants and victims and secrets and lies. I want to say that I value the press more than ever before as we try to navigate these complicated times, which brings me to this: What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have. And I’m especially proud and inspired by all the women who have felt strong enough and empowered enough to speak up and share their personal stories.
Each of us in this room are celebrated because of the stories that we tell. And this year we became the story. But it’s not just a story affecting the entertainment industry. It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics or workplace. So I want tonight to express gratitude to all the women who have endured years of abuse and assault because they, like my mother, had children to feed, bills to pay and dreams to pursue.
They’re the women whose names we’ll never know. They are domestic workers. And farm workers. They are working in factories and they work in restaurants and they’re in academia, and engineering, and medicine, and science. They’re part of the world of tech and politics and business. They’re our athletes in the Olympics and they’re our soldiers in the military. And there’s someone else: Recy Taylor. A name I know and I think you should know too.
In 1944, Recy Taylor was a young wife and a mother. She was just walking home from a church service she’d attended in Abbeville, Ala., when she was abducted by six armed white men, raped and left blindfolded by the side of the road coming home from church. They threatened to kill her if she ever told anyone, but her story was reported to the NAACP where a young worker by the name of Rosa Parks became the lead investigator on her case. And together, they sought justice.
But justice wasn’t an option in the era of Jim Crow. The men who tried to destroy her were never [prosecuted]. Recy Taylor died 10 days ago, just shy of her 98th birthday. She lived as we all have lived, too many years in a culture broken by brutally powerful men. For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dared to speak their truth to the power of those men. But their time is up.
But their time is up. Their time is up! Their time is up. And I just hope — I just hope that Recy Taylor died knowing that her truth, like the truth of so many other women who were tormented in those years, and even now tormented, goes marching on.
It was somewhere in Rosa Parks’ heart almost 11 years later when she made the decision to stay seated on that bus in Montgomery, and it’s here with every woman who chooses to say, “Me too.” And every man who chooses to listen.
In my career, what I’ve always tried my best to do, whether in television or through film, is to say something about how men and women really behave. To say how we experience shame, how we love and how we rage, how we fail, how we retreat, persevere and how we overcome.
I’ve interviewed and portrayed people who’ve withstood some of the ugliest things life can throw at you, but the one quality all of them seem to share is an ability to maintain hope for a brighter morning, even during our darkest nights. So I want all the girls watching here now to know that a new day is on the horizon!
And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women, many of whom are right here in this room tonight. And some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say “Me too” again. Thank you.