Obama-o-rama: Barack Obama fires up the crowd in Columbia, S.C., as Oprah Winfrey looks on.
If Oprah Winfrey can do for politicians what she’s done for books and for any number of consumer items on her “Favorite Things” lists, Barack Obama might have a serious shot at the White House next November. Oprah held court on Sunday at a South Carolina stadium filled with nearly 30,000 Obama supporters, a giant pep rally that “had the feel of a rock concert,” according to Associated Press reporter Seanna Adcox.
Winfrey, who also campaigned for Obama on Saturday in Iowa, offered a touch of talk show-like advice during a 17-minute speech. “There are those who say it’s not his time, that he should wait his turn. Think about where you’d be in your life if you’d waited when people told you to,” she said.
“I’m sick of politics as usual,” Winfrey said. “We need Barack Obama.”
A recent AP-Pew Research poll has New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton leading in South Carolina with 45 percent of likely Democratic primary voters, followed by Obama’s 31 percent. The two candidates break even on the black vote here, and that’s where Winfrey’s appeal could become a factor—along with her pull among women.
Obama, during his address, criticized the Bush administration and took several veiled swipes at Clinton, though never referenced his rival by name.