Oprah Winfrey tells Vogue why a 2020 presidential run would 'kill' her

Oprah Winfrey is British Vogue’s August 2018 cover star.

The media mogul looks positively regal on the cover, in a custom gown from Stella McCartney (the same designer who put together her custom look for the royal wedding in May) and bejeweled earrings from Buccellati.

Famed fashion photographers Mert Alas and Marcus Piggot shot the cover and accompanying photos, while Winfrey was styled by the magazine’s relatively new editor-in-chief, Edward Enninful.

In the accompanying interview, Winfrey explains why running for president would “kill her,” the positive changes she’s seen as a result of the Me Too movement, and how she avoided a massive faux pas at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s nuptials.

Winfrey gave a rousing speech at the Golden Globes in January, and her longtime partner, Stedman Graham, hinted she might be interested in running for president. But the 64-year-old has shot down the notion that she would enter politics in 2020.

“In that political structure ― all the non-truths, the bullshit, the crap, the nastiness, the backhanded backroom stuff that goes on ― I feel like I could not exist,” Winfrey told British Vogue. “I would not be able to do it. It’s not a clean business. It would kill me.”

Though she’s staying away from entering politics, Winfrey has repeatedly voiced her support for the Me Too and Time’s Up movements against sexual abuse, harassment and exploitation. And she feels that change is imminent. 

“People talk about ‘these are such dark times,’ but what if we shift the paradigm? Because I see it differently,” Winfrey said. “I see, ‘Isn’t this remarkable that we’re waking up?’ For years, women have endured craziness. This is what’s happening to people. They’re allowing themselves to not just become corroded, but to become hysterical. You’ve got to lean to the happiness.”

The world felt a collective moment of happiness on May 19, at the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s gorgeous nuptials. Winfrey surprised viewers everywhere (except her best friend, Gayle King, who was commenting on the wedding) when she showed up to the event of the year ― if not the decade. 

Though Winfrey looked stunning in a pale pink Stella McCartney number, she almost committed a major faux pas by wearing a cream gown to the nuptials. She described what would have been the nearly unforgivable ordeal in her British Vogue interview. 

“[I saw the Stella McCartney gown and it] looked white, not cream,” Winfrey told the magazine. “I Googled, ‘Can you wear white to a wedding?’ Answer: ‘No, don’t risk it.’” 

People who might run against Trump in 2020
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People who might run against Trump in 2020

Former Vice President Joe Biden

(Photo by Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

(Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.)

(Photo by Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Sen. Kamala Davis (D-Calif.)

(Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.)

(Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg

(Photo by David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)

(Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)

Former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (D)

(Photo by: REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes)

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)

(Photo by: Lloyd Bishop/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper

(Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo

(Photo credit MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley

(Photo credit NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro

(Photo by Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.)

(Photo by Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.)

(Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio)

(Photo credit ZACH GIBSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick

(Photo by Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

(Photo by James Keivom/NY Daily News via Getty Images)

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban

(Photo by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Environmental activist Tom Steyer

(Photo by David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez

(Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton 

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom

(Photo by Yichuan Cao/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg

(Photo credit FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz

(Photo credit should read JASON REDMOND/AFP/Getty Images)

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson

(Photo by Donna Ward/Getty Images)

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii)

(Photo credit TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.)

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y)

(Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

California Gov. Jerry Brown

(Photo by Tiffany Rose/Getty Images for Caruso )

Media mogul Oprah Winfrey

(Photo by Moeletsi Mabe/Sunday Times/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.)

(Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Former Vice President Al Gore

(Photo credit DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images)

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.)

(Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.)

(Photo by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti

(Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images,)

Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.)

(Photo by Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu

Albin Lohr-Jones/Pool via Bloomberg

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.)

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee

(Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke

(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Michael Bloomberg

(Christopher Smith/Invision/AP)


Despite almost risking it all, the media mogul seems to have had an amazing time at the wedding.

“It felt like another level of everything. It felt like more than a wedding,” Winfrey told “Extra” last month. “It felt like a shift in culture. I left more hopeful.”

In the rest of the Vogue pictures shared on Monday, Winfrey oozes elegance in a rich, red satin gown from Alexander McQueen and a floral gown from Erdem, one of the Duchess of Cambridge’s favorite labels. Her gorgeous jewels look like they were plucked right from the Crown Jewels collection.

To read the rest of Oprah’s interview, head to British Vogue or pick up a copy of the magazine when it hits newsstands July 6. 

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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