Oprah Touts Her Past Support of Republicans

Here's a CNN clip of Oprah and Obama.

Oprah Winfrey in Des Moines, Iowa today:

"Over the years, I have voted for as many Republicans as I have Democrats," Winfrey said — one line that didn't draw applause in the partisan crowd. "This isn't about partisanship for me. This is very, very personal. I'm here because of my personal conviction about Barack Obama and what I know he can do for America."

Obama on Oprah:

"You want Oprah as vice president?" he asked the crowd that responded with enthusiastic cheers. "That would be a demotion, you understand that?"

The Obama campaign gave out 23,00 tickets to the event. It said 18,500 people attended.

Obama spoke after Winfrey, and acknowledged that he was under no illusions that the crowd was there to hear him. Indeed, some people left during his speech, although the majority stuck around to hear him.

The New York Times puts attendance at "more than 10,000 screaming admirers." Oprah spoke for 17 minutes and as to why Obama should be President, said: [More...]

“There are those who say that Barack Obama should wait his turn. There are those who say that he should take a gradual approach to presidential leadership, but none of us is God,” Ms. Winfrey said. “We don’t know what the future holds, so we must respond to the pressures and the fortunes of history when the moment strikes.
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    Wow, Oprah really has Clinton supporters rattled. (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Geekesque on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 07:42:46 PM EST
    This is funny, and very much enjoyable.

    Who's that ??? (none / 0) (#16)
    by RedHead on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 04:09:50 PM EST
    which Clinton supporters are rattled ??

    Past support of Repubs?? (1.00 / 0) (#22)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Dec 10, 2007 at 08:40:05 AM EST
    Who knew?

    She still support a Republican! (none / 0) (#1)
    by koshembos on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 05:46:44 PM EST

    Oh Jeralyn, you're above this (none / 0) (#2)
    by RedHead on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 06:21:31 PM EST
    this is the line of attack the MSM and the spinners use to downplay or marginalize anti-war protests or the size of Million Man March.

    As for voting for Republicans, wasn't Gov Ryan a good Republican??

    What's wrong with converts and indies - Wes Clark voted for Nixon and Reagan (a total of 4 times); Jim Webb; John Cole; etc.  Marcos posted a list not to long ago of Republican office holders who have recently switched.  

    What's next, disqualifying Clinton for taking money from Murdoch?  For making overtures to Colin Powell?

    J, I thought you were better than that.

    Ryan (none / 0) (#3)
    by RalphB on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 07:12:51 PM EST
    Isn't Gov Ryan in prison?

    She didn't say (none / 0) (#6)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 08:03:56 PM EST
    she's a convert or that she used to be a Republican and is now a Democrat. She said she has voted for Republicans as much as Democrats.  That's not the mark of a progressive. I've never voted for a Republican. They don't share my values.

    It's relevant in the context of whether Obama is really a progressive, which is you read this thread, has been the topic since this morning.

    You have made several comments here today that are insulting in tone. Please lose the insults or comment at another site.


    "They don't share my values." (none / 0) (#13)
    by Rojas on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 08:02:22 AM EST
    What might those values be? On economic and civil rights (criminal justice) issues the cintons have been the most effective "republicans" in decades.

    you won't hear me (none / 0) (#19)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 05:17:03 PM EST
    extol Bill Clinton's record as President on criminal justice issues. He was terrible. But, still better than the Republicans....

    And he's come around on a lot of them, from over-incarceration to now supporting restoring the right to vote to offenders who have completed their sentences to regretting that so many mandatory minimums came in on his watch.

    Hillary was an early supporter of the original, non-watered down Innocence Protection Act and has criticized mandatory minimum sentences -- See her comments at the Howard University debate.

    SEN. CLINTON: In order to tackle this problem, we have to do all of these things.

    Number one, we do have to go after racial profiling. I've supported legislation to try to tackle that.

    Number two, we have to go after mandatory minimums. You know, mandatory sentences for certain violent crimes may be appropriate, but it has been too widely used. And it is using now a discriminatory impact.

    Three, we need diversion, like drug courts. Non-violent offenders should not be serving hard time in our prisons. They need to be diverted from our prison system. (Applause.)

    We need to make sure that we do deal with the distinction between crack and powder cocaine. And ultimately we need an attorney general and a system of justice that truly does treat people equally, and that has not happened under this administration. (Applause.)

    Hillary Voted to restore voting rights to (none / 0) (#20)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 05:43:39 PM EST
    felons who had served their sentences in 2002. Interestingly, John Edwards voted against restoration. Here's the roll call vote.

    Obama wasn't in the Senate then. He didn't start serving until 2005. Not a very long record.

    I just checked his history of introducing legislation on Thomas. Nothing on criminal justice issues.


    They built the prison nation, (none / 0) (#21)
    by Rojas on Mon Dec 10, 2007 at 06:09:48 AM EST
    but they'er a bit to the left of Atilla. That's supposed to be a litmis test for progressives?

    I reject the argument that these people are "better than republicans". I think it's quite the contrary in fact. Our incarceration rate is a direct result of the clintons coopting the worst ideas of the "law and order" crowd and embracing them as democrat policies. It was salesmanship that no republican could have accomplished.


    Is Hillary a "progressive" ?? (none / 0) (#17)
    by RedHead on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 04:35:54 PM EST

    "She said she has voted for Republicans as much as Democrats.  That's not the mark of a progressive. I've never voted for a Republican. They don't share my values.  It's relevant in the context of whether Obama is really a progressive"

    As a progressive, I too have never voted for a Republican.  Progressives have had a lot problems with Clinton, even though we want to for a woman, we're wary.

    For example, using yourpoint - the fact that Clinton attended and accepted Rupert Murdoch's bundled-fundraiser in 2006 caused us to question whether Clinton is really a progressive.   It's fair to ask, what kind of person would accept Murdoch's support.

    And to be even handed, if accepting Oprah's support casts doubts on one's progressive credentials, then Hillary Clinton's bona fides are further damaged.


    Exhibit #1

    Exhibit #2

    Exhibit #3

    Exhibit #4

    p.s. "don't tase me, bro!"


    Fixing broken links (none / 0) (#18)
    by RedHead on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 04:41:01 PM EST
    my bad.

    Here are the repaired links.

    Exhibit #1

    Exhibit #2

    Exhibit #3

    Exhibit #4


    Didn't Oprah support (none / 0) (#5)
    by ding7777 on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 08:00:10 PM EST
    the repeal of the estate tax?  Will Obama folow?  

    i serially doubt oprah (none / 0) (#7)
    by cpinva on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 08:34:50 PM EST
    has anyone particularly rattled, least of all clinton supporters.

    frankly, if i were her, i'd be too embarrassed to admit, at least in public, that i ever voted for a republican. that, in and of itself, says a lot about her judgment, or lack of.

    if you're like me (and i am!), you're still looking for something concrete from obama, with actual real facts supporting it. what we've gotten from him, and oprah, is platitudes, lots of platitudes.

    is there a candidate who's against improving education, against improving the lot of the impoverished, against improving national security? probably not. ok, dick cheney comes really close, but he isn't running, as far as we know.

    all candidates are for those things, what i want to know is how they plan to accomplish them. this is obama's greatest weakness; when you lack the knowledge and experience in the issues, it's very difficult to formulate intelligent plans to pursue your stated policy objectives.

    oprah can't change that.

    Clinton supporters would not be attacking (none / 0) (#9)
    by Geekesque on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 11:17:16 PM EST
    Oprah if they weren't rattled.  

    I agre with that (none / 0) (#12)
    by DA in LA on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 01:32:32 AM EST
    Look, having Oprah in your corner, regardless of what she says about past voting (and I think her comment only helps) is a pretty big deal.  Bigger than any other endorsement.

    I really don't know what the fuss is about her statement.  So, she voted Republican.  You don't know for what office, or when.  In the recent past, republicans were not the monsters they are now.


    Oprah -go for it. (none / 0) (#8)
    by katiekat489 on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 09:11:19 PM EST
    Got it-Clinton has her mom and daughter -Obama has Oprah (who is not allowed to change or maybe bring in some new Dems) and Obama also is forbidden from trying to bring new voters in cause he is not a Clinton--the annoited sainted one who has been such a powerful leader and a strong voice for progressives. (I wish then I could support her)
    If she gets her hubby to cover for her I say he has every right to have Oprah-who has actually the right to voice her opinion and her support.
    But if not then Clark,Wilson et al that support Clinton should also be quiet.(By the way they were proud to mention that they voted Repug and came over to this side.But the upstart Obama does not get to have his crossover cause after all he stands in the way -and the new psycosis from a female blogger that is unable to see the forest for the trees when it comes to Clinton  is that he is a "cannibal progressive" Nice.

    katie, katie, katie!! lol (none / 0) (#10)
    by cpinva on Sat Dec 08, 2007 at 11:27:03 PM EST
    obama can bring in anyone he wants, no one's said otherwise. if he wants to bring in "and the pips" to front for him, more power to him. heck, he can bring the marine band, "the president's own", for all i care. whoever he brings won't change an essential fact: he lacks depth. if you scratch his surface, you'll get...............more surface, and beneath that, even more.

    you can dress that pig up in all the finery you want, in the end, it's still a pig.

    i'm not sure what a "cannibal progressive" is, is it anything like a "hannibal lector conservative"? of course, the problem with all cannibals is that, eventually, they end up eating their young.

    i've no doubt of sen. obama's sincerity and dedication, no one's ever questioned that. it's his lack of experience that truly bothers me (unlike andrew young, his age is irrelevant to me), which constantly shows in his campaign's gaffe's.

    bring on 2016 baby, it'll be obama all the way!


    C (none / 0) (#15)
    by jondee on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 02:18:42 PM EST
    Explain to me how that thoroughly demonized woman is going to carry a swing state full of male voters with E.D anxiety.

    cpinva,cpinva,cpinva (none / 0) (#11)
    by katiekat489 on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 12:55:23 AM EST
    Is condescending a wonderful thing or what??seems to run rampant ==especially among women.Thanks but will pass on the "lipstick pig thing"" Imagine that imagery for Clinton. Good thing Bill was so much older and experienced when he was elected not to mention Kennedy.Oh and the cannibal progressive is from no other than another Clinton blogger who is in the last throes of losing it.

    Irrestpective of Oprah's statements, (none / 0) (#14)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 09, 2007 at 01:29:18 PM EST
    the photos of her and Obama together look likek a proud mom doting on her young son.