It's a non-issue: Winfrey not 'biased' when it comes to Palin. What do you think? Comment.

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Forewarned is forearmed: I'm a fan of Oprah Winfrey's. If I wasn't, I wouldn't blog about her. I wouldn't watch her show every day and I wouldn't hold her to a certain respect for whats she's accomplished for herself, and more importantly, others.

That said, call me biased all you want after reading this, but just because I have respect for Winfrey, doesn't cloud my judgment when it comes to the Oprah/Sarah Palin flap that's been brewing since last week.

Winfrey's been - and still is being - blasted by right-wing conservatives and bloggers about her decision not to have Republican veep candidate Sarah Palin on her show during the election season. Many have called her biased. Others say she's being unfair.

I say get over it.

The controversy in a nut-graph. A posting on the Drudge report last week claimed Winfrey's staff had been divided over whether to have Palin on the show. "Half of her staff really wants Sarah Palin on," an unidentified source told Drudge. "Oprah's Web site is getting tons of requests to put her on, but Oprah and a couple of her top people are adamantly against it because of Obama."

That posting gave the manufactured controversy a life of its own.

Responding to the criticism - something Winfrey rarely does - she issued the following statement to viewers and critics:

"The item in today's Drudge Report is categorically untrue," Winfrey said in a surprise response last week. "There has been absolutely no discussion about having Sarah Palin on my show. 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."

You think it would have ended there. It didn't.

Everyone who's everyone has weighed in on the "controversy" - and now a Republican women's group is boycotting Winfrey, her show, her magazine, her existence, calling her biased for not having Palin on her show.

I agree completely - Palin would make a great interview. And so would John McCain, Joe Biden and Barack Obama. Heck, while we're at it, Hillary Clinton would make a great interview. But because Winfrey isn't showcasing this year's round of political contenders on her show, she's all of a sudden turned "biased."

Come on, folks.

Here's the facts:
• Winfrey hasn't had ANY of the political candidates on her show - so why should she start with Palin?

• Yes, it's a fact she's thrown her support behind Obama - something she's never done publicly for any political candidate. That doesn't make her show biased. Election issues haven't crept up anywhere in her show this season, and she's made a pledge to not let them.

• Winfrey doesn't pretend to be Bill O'Reilly or Anderson Cooper. Let's say for a second she IS biased. So what? It's her show. She doesn't work for a news network like CNN or FOX - she can have whoever she wants - or doesn't want - on her show.

Would Winfrey be criticized for not having Palin on the show if she wasn't personally supporting Obama? Not in the least.

A source of mine at the Oprah show calls this manufactured controversy just that - and isn't worried that it won't blow over.

And nether am I.

With all the issues on the table this election season, this seems like a clear non-issue.

Almost 4,500 Republican women in Florida say they'll boycott Winfrey because of her "bias" and say it's "unclear" what effect Winfrey's "bias" will have on her ratings and magazine circulation.

I doubt it will have any - and most of those 4,500 women will be back watching Winfrey before you and I both know it.

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30 Comments

I Have been an Opraholic for ever.
BUT NO MORE.
AMEN

So now it's breaking on Drudge that Oprah is begging to produce Obama's upcoming 1/2 hour primetime event.

So much for "being her own woman" and staying above politics. Reality check here. This is all about ratings, ratings, books, books, MONEY MONEY, and of course, racism racism.

As an independent, I am still undecided in the voting booth. However, I viewed the O shows back in 2005 and 06 where BO was a guest. I think Oprah made a very pointed statement about this candidate, using her show as a springboard. I do feel that BO is a Hollywood fabrication and creation of Harpo. Will this make him less of a good president? I am unsure--maybe so, maybe not.

For Oprah and her corporation to say that she is not using her show to showcase the candidates is well, not true. The O Magazine has had no problems with having Michelle gracing the pages. I believe that to have Palin on her show would truly "confuse" the O followers into thinking that perhaps Oprah feels positive about Palin, and Harpo doesn't want the "confusion".

I say just "fess up". Everyone knows that Oprah has ALREADY used her show to endorse BO.

Oprah is a racist, sexist and ethnocentrist.
Who does she think she's kidding?!?!?!
After she went to all the trouble to clearly publicly back Obama/Oprama!
She's full of whooey!
Her and all of her cult followers who scream at a level that only dogs can hear, over her ultra-expensive luxury.
Then, after you've followed her direction and bought all of her junk, she brings you on the show and make a public example of you by divulging that you're in debt!
What a bunch of loons!

Well, you know I have been an Oprah viewer, magazine buyer, quoter,heck I even bought New Earth etc....
But I have never been a fan of those who use their shows as a political bully pulpit.
Unfortunately, I feel this has happened with Oprah and her support for Obama.
When he appeared on her show, it gave him a push in the polls when he was running for the Dem nomination.
She easily could have Sarah Palin on her show as long as she gives equal time to Joe Biden.
It's that simple.
But to say there is no bias on her part would be untrue and we aren't THAT stupid.
Anyway, I've stopped watching all the shows that pander to my supposed demographics...The View, Oprah etc...
I'm tired of being lectured to and listening to one sided blah blah blah.
So, in turn, thanks for listening to my blah, blah blah.
Now... let's try to be polite and civil through this election, okay?

It is Oprah's show and she can do what she wants in her interviews. She did have Obama on before he won the election and she has come out in support of his nomination before. But after the election if Sarah Palin wishes to avoid her show she should be as gracious for the no thank you. I feel Oprah does have an uncanny ability to get to the heart of different issues. I will watch as usual, but may be more selective in her programs and recommendation which is my right and everyone else.

sure Oprah has been biased in who she has on and it is her right to have on who she wants. I find it interesting that she has decied now to say something about it. I suspect that her ratings are being effected by her choice to ignore someone who would seem to be a natural guest of hers.

Oprah, like every person who has walked the earth is biased. There is no way around that fact - it is human nature. Yes, she is supporting a candidate; that's her right.

The woman has said she would not have an individual who is actively seeking residence in the WH on the show during this election. Perhaps after having candidates on in 2000 she decided that it was not in her best interests to do so in the future.

I personally do not understand why people would expect her to have any of the candidates on - the candidates are not lacking resources to get their messages heard. They have access to the media and therefore access to the public. It's called campaigning.

Why hasn't there been a push by Oprah's disgruntled fans and critics to have the other three candidates on her show? Why just Palin? Seems rather sexist and biased on the disgruntled fans and critics part to me. Where's the outcry for other talk show hosts to feature any or all four of the candidates?

For those who want to learn more about Palin, turn to the news - the journalistic kind, turn to her campaign, turn to the historical data that is available. But please, don't turn to entertainment television to learn more about the candidate who could very well be the next vice president.

BTW
I am neither dem nor repub; I do not watch Oprah; and I am a woman.

Oprah said years back that she didn't want her show to backslide, ala Jerry Springer, and pander to the lowest audience denominator. Sarah Palin is the lowest audience and presidential denominator.

Good for Oprah.

I think that Oprah made the right decision by not allowing the presidential candidates use her show for a chance to promote themselves. Oprah's show is not a campaign opportunity but a family t.v show. Her viewers shouldn't be bombarded with campaign propaganda from the presidential candidates. Even when you do see the candidates on t.v being interviewed, they usually try their best to mud-sling one another with nasty criticisms. Also, not everyone is interested in the presidential elections and it would'nt be fair if their usual viewing of Oprah be bombarded with the presidental candidates( who are only out to promote themselves).Thus, Oprah's decision to remain nuetral and not put any of the candidates on her show was a wise decision.

This is all so ridiculous...as I read the comments on here it is so unbelievable how everyone can give all the negatives on Oprah now that she is not doing something that you want her to do. Get your own show and have Palin on your panel. Leave her alone and just don't watch the show. Oprah is already famous, quit trying to get your 15 minutes of fame. Sit down and shut up...go watch Maury (I am sure her daughter will be on there soon when she is pregnant for the 2nd and 3rd time before she is 20)

I not a fan of Oprah. So, I'll watch if the subject interest me. She tends to rub me the wrong way sometimes, but I try to be more neutral towards her. I don't agree with her all the time either.

However, I do believe that it would be inappropriate to have any of the candidates on the show. The pressure being put on Oprah to have Mrs. Palin on the show is embarrassing. This isn't the forum that she needs for Americans to get to know her. Doing Oprah would just be a chitchat with the girls. People would only get a retelling of her story. We've already heard it more than once. This is the time for her to let people know where she stands on serious political issues. Oprah is not the place for it.

Sarah Palin needs to do interviews with the mainstream media and cable news. Do an interview with Catie Couric or Larry King. She hasn't been taking any questions from the media and has only two interviews under her belt. Because she's keep away from the media, going on Oprah can only be seen as political strategy to get women voters.

While she has faults, the problem isn't Oprah, it's the GOP that's keeping Palin on such a short leash. They say she's a maverick, a reformer, tough enough to take on her own party. Strough enough to be second to the leader of the free world!! But can't handle interviews with some in the news media that are biased. A GOP spokesperson said that she won't take interviews because of the biased media.

By that logic Oprah should be the last place she should go do an interview, since she has publicly supported Obama!

I want to see Sarah Palin, but not on Oprah.

Ummm...she should be on Jerry Springer, not Oprah!

Or perhaps Maury Povich could do one of his famous paternity tests and set the record straight on Bristol and Trigg!

Funny stuff the GOP is coming up with.

I am relieved that I am only a neighbour of the USA right now, (not Russia..LOL..Canada, Sarah)

thanks goodness oprah is her own woman. if these women think they can control her programming....guess what? not going to happen. the benefit of being independently weathly is you can say NO to domination. let these republican women cancel their so called subscriptions...and if they have tickets to the oprah show, return them so that some of us who are supporters and would LOVE to go to the show can attend. adios!

Many arguments I've seen in regards to Palin being on the Oprah show have to do with her accomplishments as a woman. I can't see those accomplishments changing in the next 50 days. Let the race run it's course. Let Oprah have non-political guests.

more manufactured garbage by the GOP. Oprah doesn't have to bow to anyone. Oprah owns Oprah. The republicans may be gangsters but Oprah won't fold. She is strong, strong, strong.

Oprah does specifically pose herself as one who represents women and women's issues. Politics aside, this is the first female vice-presidential candidate since Geraldine Ferraro.

Also, when Oprah had Barak Obama on her show, she specifically asked him if he had any plans to run for president. When he told her he had no such plans, she announced in front of her audience that she would support an Obama presidential run.

Now she may not have had him as a guest while he was a nominee....but considering what she did on that show, it hardly matters. If Oprah wanted to keep her program out of politics, she had the opportunity back then. However, she ignored it and chose to use her show to endorse Obama before he was even running.

With that said, I don't watch Winfrey, I haven't chosen which ticket I am going to vote for and frankly, I don't care if Palin ever sets foot on the Oprah set. I do care about honesty. So unlike the author of this article, I don't support any of the parties involved and I don't have any stake in this. Well, except for truth.

I do agree this is much to ado about nada. That show is Oprah's. She built it up from nothing and she can have whomever she wants on her program. And much like the "lipstick" controversy, I think this one has become tired and overblown. But also, as it is Oprah's choice to not interview a particular guest, it is the viewer's choice to stop watching her. It is, after all, a free country. So I guess in the end, everybody wins!

Ms. Winfrey's clear voice on behalf of Barack Obama should continue to ring out in the land. One hopes that she will not allow herself to be co-opted or neutralized by those Republicans who might wish to induce women identify themselves and their ultimate interests with those of Ms. Palin.

Sarah, would be lowering herself being on Oprah!

Of course Oprah is biased. If Governor Palin were a black woman she would have been on her show long ago. Oprah is as it appears now bloviating about empowering women. We have been deceived by Oprah the "true character" of Oprah has come to light. Sarah is much more reality based and more an everyday woman for many reasons but the most important being a Wife and Mother. America loves Sarah. Sarah is everything a woman strives to become a woman of excellent character, educated, intelligent, exudes a positive, warm but powerful appearance which also is apparent when she speaks. She has her faith, earns a substantial salary, is righteous, confident, beautiful, great body and can handle a weapon. She has all the qualities of a powerful leader. She has accomplished all the aforementioned while being a Wife and Mother. Sarah has it all. It does not get much better than that for a woman. Oprah, Obama and his ridiculous wife have nothing in comparision to Sarah. Sarah has more character in her pinky finger than they could ever have in a life time. Sarah stands and has the balls to fight for what is right no matter who she has take down including members of her own party. Sarah is what America deserves. OPRAH IS A PINHEAD. I WOULD SAY INTIMIDATED BY SARAH AS SHE SHOULD BE. WHEN YOU COMPARE THE TWO WOMEN AND THEIR ASSOCIATES, FAITH AND POLITICAL VIEWS THERE IS NO COMPARISION.

The ground swell has been amazing. In the last 24 hours www.PalinPetition.com has had over 41,000 people sign.

The comments on the board (which are private) range in both directions. Our group (thepoliticalfish) is completely neutral. We are striving to allow those who want to express their desire to see Gov. Palin on Oprah to do so.

Regards to all,

PalinPetition.com team.

jhb

Give me a break. Does the "Oprah fan" who recently blogged actually watch the Oprah Winfrey show? I guess he/she missed the episodes of grandeur with Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Barrack Obama. Oprah chose to make her show a biased political statement after those interviews, wouldn't you say?

To say Oprah is non biased is implying you are not watching nor listening to the implications being toted all around her- including Holly Pete on Oprah's radio show pounding Sarah Palin like a playground bully. If I wanted to hear that type of hatchet job I would listen to MSNBC, not Oprah Winfrey!

Wow girlfriend Oprah, you let me down, you let THOUSANDS of WOMEN down. True, Oprah has done a lot for a lot of people, and one mistake (which I think she is making) does not a failure make----however, WOW! what a biggy, snubbing the first female VP pick when 100 years ago we weren't even allowed to vote! Let's just tuck her away behind the MAN oh the opposing ticket. It is a slap in the face to Sarah Palin,me and every female viewer. Bravo for the women in Fla. boycotting. My friends and I in Northern VA are doing the same. Don't dare presume women are so weak they would "run back" to Oprah when the dust settles...we WORKING MOMS can certainly find many other pressing things to do in one hour as well as find other media outlets to support.

Come on Oprah! Stand UP for WOMEN! Haven't working mother's been getting the shaft long enough??? Give Sarah Palin the equal airtime you gave the MEN Obama, and Edwards, OR just be honest with yourself and your viewers and let us know you prefer to use your stage for one sided politics.

The truth always looks and sounds much better.

Great write-up, beyond get over it... Republicans are always crying foul when they don't get their way. They are a very 'white' party and yet now place themselves as the party of Lincoln. Civil rights - remember that, I don't recall anyRepublicans coming to the forefront during those times, at least on the side of Lincoln, but now they use that affiliation as if its their mantra. They are Christians, but yet Palin has an unwed 17 year old who's 5 months pregnant and they are proud of her? What happened to family values? Lets not forget teaching abstinence, oh yeah, that's right it wasn't taught in school so its not Sarah's fault her daughter is pregnant - A new government law to teach abstinence in school would've kept her daughter safe. Heaven forbid she should be at home being a good Christian mother sacrificing her own career to raise her children. Personal sacrifice for the good of the nation I believe begins in the home raising your children to be productive citizens, I mean productive to society not just the population. Oprah doesn't want her show to be political? Why should she, let her give things away and talk about feeling good, that's her credo I say, let her stick by it. It's her show, not the Republicans

The last I've heard women have the right to CHOOSE and the right to say NO. These women thats boycotting Oprah is just silly and bullies. what do they think this is "color purple". we need to boycott Gov.Palin for not taking interveiws from meet the press, cnn and others. oh! thats right she did do one. leave Oprah alone BULLIES.

It has been seven years and I still cry over 911. But tonight I cried even harder because with Palin on the ticket, we make ourselves even more critically vulunerable to terrorist.
What are we thinking?
That figures...

I could not have expressed the above entry by Mark Bieganski any better. These are not women paying for space on Oprah just a bunch of disgruntled women tryin to control something that is not theirs to control. It's a non issue. Those who like may vote for her or not.

It's not just the repulicans who are upset. As a working mom and wife, I would like to hear where Palin stands on the issues and would prefer a setting like Oprah versus a toally Left or Right media person doing the interview. Oprah made the wrong choice and there are and will continue to be consequences. Her actions show her to be an elitist...and of course that's what the money has done to her. 15 years ago she would have had Palin on. It's sad indeed and I am no longer an Oprah fan...not just the Palin decision, lots of other decisions and comments she has made has made the big O and big NO.

Oprah is the biggest reverse racist there is, and she only supports Obama because he is black. She was sobbing uncontrollably when he accepted the nomination and she looked like a complete idiot. She could never convince anyone that she is non-biased after that performance. And while we're at it, it was a pleasant change to see a picture of a dog on the cover of Oprah's magazine, instead of ANOTHER picture of her. I guess she and Obama have that in common...egotism!

It is amazing to me that Oprah would choose not to have Sarah Palin on her show.
I have often admired Oprah for her generosity of spirit, intellect, money and time.
She has been a role model for many.
Sarah Palin deserves to have the Oprah show as a forum in which to allow Americans to get to know her better. NO matter what Oprah's political affiliations may be, we are all Americans and Govenor Palin is a woman.
She has accomplihed much in Alaska both on a municipal level as well as statewide. Let Oprah give Sarah the opportunity to tell us about her goals, plans, and visions for this wonderful country of ours.
As an independent woman with my own accomplishments, failures, successes, dreams fulfilled and ones yet to come, I respectfully sbmit that I will no longer tap into Oprah's show. Additionally, I will be cancelling my subscription to her magazine.
I remain hopeful that Oprah will re-think her decision.

Diana Pilkington Armbrust

I believe you are confused. You state that Obama has not appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

Are you sure about that?

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This page contains a single entry by Mark Bieganski published on September 11, 2008 8:52 AM.

Listen up Oprah Book Club fans: Winfrey's next pick debuts next Friday. was the previous entry in this blog.

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