Trump trolls Oprah over '60 Minutes' panel
Oprah has said she won't run for president in 2020, but President Trump still baited her on Twitter after a '60 Minutes' interview where she talked to voters about his presidency. USA TODAY
On Sunday's edition of 60 Minutes, correspondent Oprah Winfrey reconvened a panel of 14 voters in Grand Rapids, Mich., to take their temperatures after a year under the leadership of President Trump. She explained she wanted to go back after learning that the group, hand-picked by Republican pollster Frank Luntz, had all stayed in touch since they first met last fall, socializing in person and meeting online to debate economic, security and cultural issues and even Trump himself.
It wasn't all kumbaya and trust falls. The reunion chat turned testy when Winfrey brought up the president's infamous quote about immigrants from third-world countries and they admitted their Facebook group nearly blew up over the sexual harassment epidemic. They called BS on each other's points occasionally. But with prodding from Winfrey, they were able to elaborate on their talking points and explain their positions and the other side began to understand why they felt the way they did.
Afterward, Luntz expressed surprise. "There was every reason to believe, based on the conversation, that they'd pull themselves apart. But what I liked about it is that they came to respect each other, appreciate each other and live each other's lives to some degree. They could empathize."
Guess who couldn't empathize?
Trump dashed off a trademark angry tweet overnight, calling Winfrey "very insecure," her questions "biased and slanted" and her facts "incorrect." He also said he hopes she runs for president so "she can be exposed and defeated just like all the others."
There's just one problem: Winfrey has said on the record multiple times that she's not interested in running. In fact, last month, she told In Style, "I’ve always felt very secure and confident with myself in knowing what I could do and what I could not. And so it’s not something that interests me. I don’t have the DNA for it."
On Sunday, Winfrey reminded us what one of her greatest gifts is: her ability to moderate and find consensus. She got people who have nothing in common politically to like each other as people.
"There is no difference around that table than what you would hear at any place of work, in people's dining room tables, even college campuses across the country," Luntz noted. "It's the same kind of give-and-take, the same kind of frustration and anxiety. The difference is that the people in Michigan really want to listen to each other."
As one of the panelists told Winfrey, "It's quite a different thing to want to understand. And I think we've gotten that out of this."