Oprah Winfrey perhaps got a taste of things to come today when a John Edwards supporter slammed the talk show host.
“If you can build a school in South Africa, build one in South
Carolina,” Linda Dogan, a member of the City Council in Spartanburg,
S.C. said on a conference call that was organized by the Edwards
campaign, according to the New York Times. Several prominent African American leaders were on the call to talk about Edwards’ “plan for opportunity.”
Oprah has never endorsed a political candidate before, and her jump into partisan politics represents a risk to her own reputation — which has otherwise been stellar.
“It makes me a little ill,” she said, noting that Ms. Winfrey is
extremely wealthy. “Oprah coming here means absolutely nothing to me
unless she’s going to do something for South Carolina.”
Meanwhile, Edwards distanced himself from an endorsement of his own — from Harry Belafonte. The singer, who has expressed support for Hugo Chavez and called President Bush the “greatest tyrant,” endorsed Edwards on Thursday. “I speak for myself, as I always do, and you know, Harry Belafonte supported John Kennedy, supported Bobby Kennedy,
and supported a whole host of presidential candidates over the years.
I’m proud of his support, and I thank him for his support, but he
doesn’t speak for me.”
And Sean Penn is endorsing Dennis Kucinich, but the Kucinich campaign doesn’t seem too worked up over what he plans to say about it. “Sean Penn is a good friend, but he’s also a very intense,
independent-minded person,” a spokesman for the Kucinich campaign told MSNBC. “He’s going to say whatever he’s going to say.'”