While private discussions have apparently been ongoing for months, the idea has now entered the public consciousness after the star’s speech at the Golden Globe Awards in LA.
In it, the actress, producer and former talk show host used a phrase which could almost double as a rallying cry: “A new day is on the horizon”.
It is perhaps something to rival Barack Obama’s “Yes We Can”.
After accepting the Cecil B. DeMille award, Winfrey told the story of a black woman, Recy Taylor, who was raped by six white men in Alabama in 1944.
An all-male jury refused to indict her attackers and she died 10 days ago, shortly before her 98th birthday, never receiving justice for the crime committed against her.
On an evening when women at the awards show wore black to remember those that have suffered sexual harassment, Winfrey, 63, said: “She (Ms Taylor) lived as we all have lived – too many years in a culture broken by brutally powerful men.
“For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dared to speak their truth to the power of those men, but their time is up.”
Why this massive #Oprah2020 moment?
Because Oprah is the antithesis of Trump: A well-spoken, incredibly smart & confident black woman, who energizes people not with hatred & anger, but with hope & vision. When we hear her speak, it reminds us of who we can be as a country.
— Like, Totally Stable Genius (@dvorakoelling) January 8, 2018
Afterwards, the hashtags #Oprahforpresident and #Oprah2020 began trending on Twitter.
Twitter user Eileen Billinson referred to President Trump’s claim that he is both mentally stable and a genius, tweeting: “Presidential candidate? Audience riveted by honest, authentic communicator who hasn’t once called herself a genius.”
Another user of the social media site said: “Why this massive #Oprah 2020 moment? Because Oprah is the antithesis of Trump: A well-spoken, incredibly smart & confident black woman, who energizes people not with hatred & anger, but with hope & vision. When we hear her speak, it reminds us of who we can be as a country.”
Two close friends of Winfrey say she is “actively thinking” about running for the presidency, CNN reported on Monday.
While saying that no decision has been taken, one of the anonymous sources said discussions had been ongoing for several months.
In recent years, Oprah has endorsed both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton for the Democrats.
And it seems she has support from within the party. A member of its national committee, Khary Penebaker, tweeted: “In a 9 minute speech, @Oprah was more presidential than the current occupant of the White House has been for an entire year.”