Thursday, December 13, 2007

Oprah getting backlash from some fans for Obama support


WASHINGTON (CNN) — Oprah Winfrey's recent campaign swing with Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama was greeted with wild cheers and record-breaking crowds.

But some of the talk show host's fans aren't happy she's become politically outspoken, and many are sounding off on Oprah's Web site.

"Oprah," says one, "count me as tuned out for now." Another writes, "It's a real turn off for a lot of your fans." And yet another says "She has crossed a line and lost my trust completely."

But, what's especially interesting about reading Oprah's Web site is why some of those fans seem to be upset: the way she stumped for Obama, they say, seemed to pit white against black.

"I've been inspired to believe that a new vision is possible for America,"
Oprah said while on the stump with Obama in South Carolina. "Dr. King dreamed the dream, we get to vote that dream into reality."

Back on Oprah's Web site, one commenter wrote, "Winfrey has artfully begun her stump speeches alongside Obama with a negative racial tone."

And another commenter wrote, "Don't pit blacks against whites."

Interviewed on ABC's Good Morning America Wednesday, Winfrey rejected the notion she is supporting Obama merely because he is black.

"I get a little..I guess the word is 'offended,'" Winfrey said. "To think that I would be supporting someone just because of their skin would mean we haven't moved far from Dr. King's speech in 1963, where he said we should be judged by the content of our character not the color of their skin."

In another interview, Winfrey told CNN that she weighed carefully whether she should get involved in politics, wondering whether she would "lose viewers as a result."

"I made the decision that I have the right to do it as an American citizen," she said.

– CNN's Carol Costello

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