Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Race trumps sex

"At the beginning of this Presidential campaign when I decided that I was going to take my first public stance in support of a candidate, I made the decision not to use my show as a platform for any of the candidates. I agree that Sarah Palin would be a fantastic interview, and I would love to have her on after the campaign is over.
---- Oprah
Well, at least she is up front on her bias.

Out in OprahLand, things are not all that happy.
If ever there were a candidate destined to shine on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," Sarah Palin would be that woman.

In less than a week, the Alaska governor, former PTA member and 44-year-old mother of five - including an infant with Down syndrome - survived a vicious press assault on her family only to win over the majority of Americans with her brave and unapologetic speech at the Republican National Convention last week.

In a media instant, Sarah Palin went from an unknown moose hunter to a mass phenomenon on the precipice of becoming the vice president of the United States.

She is the Oprah audience personified - an unlikely feminist icon that braved the storm while deftly protecting her children. Many already are saying she has the inside track for the top slot in 2012.

Mrs. Palin is history in a dress. And her script is straight out of Hollywood - like those teen movies with the cliched ending featuring the female valedictorian delivering the speech of a lifetime projecting a bold and transformative future with an independent-minded woman in charge.

That future is now.

Women want to get to know Sarah Palin. And they want to meet her family.

Yet Oprah Winfrey, the high priestess of the female empowerment movement and America's most adored television host, denies her massive and loyal audience's most obvious wishes because of her single-minded drive to put Barack Obama in the White House.
"She supports Obama because he is black, which is just as bad as NOT supporting him because he is black," voiced an anonymous woman (perhaps Geraldine Ferraro) at Oprah.com. That sentiment - the elephant in the middle of the media spin room - is commonly repeated throughout Oprah's highly trafficked message boards. A small band of defenders ignores the charge and blames Karl Rove for the mess.

"After more than 20 years of interviews, you do not have the capability to handle asking her questions about her life rather than her platform?" writes another angry fan. "Just be honest that you don't want her on the show because her popularity may detract from your personal political candidate. I'm very disappointed and you have lost a lot of credibility."
Actually, they have more of a history out there than most know. Enter stage left...
The cozy relationship between Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama predates the endorsement she gave him in May 2007. First of all, both were members of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's controversial church.
Oh hai Jeremiah!

Have fun with the book club girls -- if you are still part of that shrinking demographic.
According to a Gallup/USA Today poll in March 2007, Miss Winfrey possessed a whopping 74 percent approval rating. (Incidentally, Mrs. Palin's approval rating in Alaska is a Mother Theresa-like 80 percent.) Miss Winfrey's support dipped to 61 percent by August 2007, and during the primaries her approval dropped further to 55 percent - the lowest in her career.

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