Winfrey has overwhelmingly supported President Obama, endorsing him in both the 2008 and 2012 elections. But during an interview with BBC News, the media mogul made a startling claim about why some Americans disapprove of the President.
“There’s a level of disrespect for the office that occurs. And that occurs in some cases and maybe even many cases because he’s African-American,” she said. “There’s no question about that and it’s the kind of thing nobody ever says but everybody’s thinking it.”
In the weeks since the Affordable Care Act rolled out, the President has seen his lowest approval ratings in two years. Only 39 percent of Americans approve of Obama, a Gallup poll released last week shows.
Winfrey was a key component of Obama’s 2008 presidential run, campaigning heavily for the then-Sen. Economists estimate the former talk-show host’s endorsement was worth more than 1 million votes.
Though Winfrey did offer her endorsement of the President when he ran for re-election in 2012, she stayed off the campaign trail. And the media powerhouse turned down offers from the White House to promote Obama’s signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act.
Watch a clip of Winfrey’s interview below.