Well, better late then never I suppose. It sounds like Oprah Winfrey decided to stop licking Obama’s shoes and will hold an interview with former Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin. According to reports Palin will appear on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on Nov. 16th.

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Sarah Palin

To be fair to Oprah, Palin’s book “Going Rouge” is due to be released on Nov 17th, so this is obviously a publicity stunt designed to get more book sales (although it’s already #1). Also, having one of the hottest authors (no pun intended) on her show can’t hurt Oprah’s ratings at all.

As many of you may remember Oprah received a bit of criticism during the Presidential election, some accusing her of choosing race over gender based on her decision to have Obama on her show and never even inviting Palin to appear. To be fair, I don’t think it was a matter of choosing race over gender, it was choosing liberalism over conservatism. Clearly Obama fits much closer to Oprah’s world view and political view, so she wanted to make sure she endorsed and gave exposure to the candidate she favored. It’s her show so she’s free to do so.

However, her choice to play politics has had consequences for her show. In fact her year over year ratings have dropped significantly this year and one week in July experienced her lowest ratings since the show first started in 1985. Some speculate, including Dr. Janice Peck (a media professor at Colorado) that Oprah alienated much of her viewing audience. Her core audience is white, female, and middle-class. Peck think’s Oprah’s campaigning for Obama, and her refusal to interview Palin has had a large effect. Actually, this is something I can attest to. My wife is kind of your average Oprah viewer, a show she watched pretty regularly. However, she is also a Republican and has been quite annoyed with Oprah’s behavior during the election and pretty much quit watching her show. So, I think that Oprah’s decision to get involved in politics probably did hurt her show. On the other hand, she’s rich, so what does she care. This is something that I think all celebrities should realize though, I don’t want to know your politics, just sing, act or play sports. I used to love Bruce Springsteen but his flaming liberalism has annoyed me so much over the years that I just can’t even stand him now. Just shut up and do your job.

I don’t know about the future of Oprah’s show, but I’m guessing Nov. 16th gets her highest ratings of the year.

Photo Source: Bruce Tuten