Bill Maher isn’t confident Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren or Pete Buttigieg could beat Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election. You know who he guarantees could take the incumbent? Oprah Winfrey.
“There’s lots of people I like, but when I ask, a sure thing? No, no, no, no, no,” Maher said on Friday’s “Real Time.” “But then one night, when I was self medicating, a name appeared in the vapor above me. The only person who is a sure thing… is Oprah Winfrey.
Maher explained he’s not backing Winfrey because he’s a “giant fan.” Actually, he’s still pretty salty about how in 1997, “she demanded a second run of her show at night in the city of Chicago, in what really was [‘Politically Incorrect’s’] time slot [on ABC], which cost us in the ratings — but who gives a f–k now!” He suggests her because “what matters is Oprah alone checks all the boxes that a democrat needs to win.”
First, Maher says, “it is crucial to energize the African American base. Oprah? Uh, yeah, I think a little more than John Hickenlooper. She’ll make black polls rise like a Kardashian.”
Second, “the majority of all voters are women and 58% the Democratic electorate is women. So, does Oprah energize women?” Maher stops to laugh before adding that, “women love Oprah more than they love those shops that only sell macaroons” and that “if Oprah is running, don’t get in the way of women on election day or you’ll be seeing the color purple.”
Third, Maher says “Oprah doesn’t scare white men.”
“She’s not their first choice, that’s Kenny Chesney,” the HBO late-night host added. “But never underestimate the power of being in people’s living rooms for decades. That’s what got Trump elected. This is now an as-seen-on-TV kind of country. White men may not love Oprah, but she’s as comfortable and familiar as a pair of cargo shorts with an elastic waistband.”
Lastly, “there really is no underestimating the value of celebrity in modern American politics and that’s the final box that Oprah checks.”
“I know some voters don’t want a celebrity president, but face it, that rule went out the window in 1980 when Bonzo’s co-star got elected,” Maher said. “It’s not the way it’s supposed to be, it’s not the way I’d like it to be, but we officially live in a post-literate, post-truth, starf–ker society and this is gonna be the dirtiest campaign ever.”
Maher says his spiel isn’t an “open letter to Oprah” and concedes he knows she’s not running and he’s not “begging” her to.
“I’m just saying I have Nate Silver-ed the s–t out of this, and I’m telling you that at this particular moment in history ,in this particular election year, she’s the only candidate that’s a sure-thing winner for the Democrats. No pressure,” he said.
“I am just putting it out into the universe, like in that book she used to promote, ‘The Secret.’ And you know what the secret was: that Americans will buy anything if Oprah tells them to.”
Watch the segment above.