MSNBC Hosts Gush Over Oprah's Campaign Speech in Georgia: 'I'm a Changed Political Analyst'

November 2, 2018

MSNBC hosts Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O'Donnell lavished praise on Oprah Winfrey for her appearance in Georgia on Thursday to campaign for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.

"Rachel, I have a very controversial question for you which we've actually never discussed, even on those long canoe rides we do on the weekends on the lake. It's never come up, and that is, where are you on Oprah? For or against?" O'Donnell asked as Maddow transitioned to his show.

Maddow responded with some wordplay.

"Oprah is our hope-rah as far as I'm concerned," said Maddow, who suggested Oprah would guide humanity out of apocalyptic destruction.

"When everything else falls to hell, when everything else smolders and the ash collapses, Oprah will still be there to show us the way," Maddow said.

"Oprah is one of those people for whom 'for and against' is obviously a joke," O'Donnell added. "There's no against, except in some crazed precincts."

O'Donnell said that Oprah's campaign stop in Georgia changed his opinion about her political prospects.

"So I woke up this morning believing that Oprah Winfrey should not be a candidate for anything. I've always thought that," O'Donnell said. "Then I watched her in Georgia, and I was stunned at how good she was on the political stage as a politician. That's what she was today, a really effective high-level communicating politician."

Maddow added that Oprah demonstrated the three qualities necessary for a serious potential candidate: being able to read prepared remarks, speak off the cuff, and convince voters she has no interest in running for office.

"I mean, that's kind of a trifecta," Maddow said. "Those are the three things you need to be able to do. That and don't put on a hat and you're pretty much a top-tier candidate."

"But there was, wonderfully, there was nothing in the kind of polished politician quality of her speech at all," O'Donnell said. "It was raw and real and honest and historical and thoughtful and wise and on point."

"It was Oprah," Maddow added.

"I am a changed—well, not a changed man. I'm a changed political analyst on Oprah," O'Donnell said.