Updated Oct 16, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Oprah pitched a White House run with Mitt Romney, book reveals


Oprah Winfrey speaks at the 92nd Street Y in Manhattan last month. Photo: Christopher Smith/Invision/AP

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) tells the author of a forthcoming book that Oprah Winfrey suggested he join her on a unity presidential ticket in 2020 to stop President Trump's reelection.

The latest: After this story was published, a spokesperson for Oprah Winfrey told Axios: "In November 2019, Ms. Winfrey called Senator Romney to encourage him to run on an Independent ticket. She was not calling to be part of the ticket and was never considering running herself."

Driving the news: It's the latest revelation in "Romney: A Reckoning" by McKay Coppins, out a week from Tuesday.

Why it matters: The book is based on dozens of hours of interviews with Romney, along with access to his diaries and journals — rare access to the real-time communications of a sitting officeholder.

Zoom in: Coppins writes that Romney told him Winfrey, a Democrat, made a pitch to run together "to save the country," according to a source familiar with the manuscript.

  • Romney tells Coppins he dismissed the idea, believing that such a campaign would inadvertently help Trump.

Reality check: A source familiar with Winfrey's thinking said she was never serious about running — although some close to her thought she should.

Context: Romney, who ran for president alongside Paul Ryan on the GOP ticket in 2012, announced last month that he won't run for Senate reelection next year.

Go deeper: Retiring Romney unleashes on GOP colleagues

Editor's note: This article has been updated with comment from a spokesperson for Oprah Winfrey.

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