In light of the 2016 election’s proving the electorate’s preference for candidates perceived as authentic, even those with obvious character flaws, we have to wait and see with how the public perceives Ms. Winfrey’s authenticity.
Progressives desire policies supporting the notion of healthcare as a right, they also see the incredible power shift globalization has played in redistributing wealth to a concentrated few while still remaining upset about a bail-out banking system that’s yet to be held accountable. They want corporate reform and the influence they've wielded removed from our politics, and, they’re frustrated with liberals constantly apologizing for, or avoiding, socialist programs. Will Ms. Winfrey be any different than the establishment that seems so invigorated by her moving and well-rehearsed political speech at the Golden Globes? We’ll have to see.
We can contrast her to the clear stars in the 2016 election, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump, and review the scant political information we have from her public advocacy moments to assess whether she’s a liberal, Establishment Dems, who don't seem to let a human crisis go to waste as a photo op and/or kickoff for a policy statement, appear to have influenced Ms Winfrey. Her delivery and airiness of content left us little to judge whether she’ll act in ways counter to her own huge business empire when an opportunity to rebalance systemic inequities caused by '90's style neoliberalism threatens her admittedly deep neoliberalist ventures. For her to do so, would take incredible grace - something difficult to ascertain in an individual before they’re asked to sacrifice.
Some will certainly point to the audience auto giveaways and the many interviews and shows where she’s empathized with those suffering or maligned. Charitable giving is another positive aspect of Ms. Winfrey’s carefully crafted public and commercial persona - the magnitude of her calculated persona was evidenced in the prologue film reviewing her career, interwoven with scenes from her forthcoming film, a Disney production no less.
Humble origins, as she relayed in her acceptance speech as the first Black Woman recipient of the Cecile B. Demille award, does connect her to the sliding middle class and impoverished hourly worker, but will it pry her from the businesses she’s struggled to build. Is this just another establishment ploy to use someone whose built incredible respect and admiration and twist them to sustain a neoliberalst Agenda? We can only wait and listen!