As Democrats speculate over whether former first lady Hillary Clinton will become the first female to run for president, author Robert Fulghum has gone one further in controversy and suggested Oprah Winfrey.
Ethnic minority, female, self-made billionaire, and most respected American - the day-time talk-show host and TV impresario would seem to have all the makings of someone who would represent Americans well, according to Fulghum. The controversial statement comes from Fulghum's latest blog post, where he encourages readers not to give in to the fact that perhaps they might not like her talk show, but instead to "think big and stack her up against the likes of Ronald Reagan, Bush One, Bush Two, Nixon, Ford, or even Hoover."
"President Oprah Winfrey. Think about it," Fulghum opines. The author also claims controversially in the post that Kerry, Lieberman, Richardson, Pelosi, and Clinton are "not electable", since they do not live up to twenty key criteria qualifications, a move sure to anger many of those Democrats who strongly favor Clinton as an excellent candidate. The criteria include, "intelligent and street smart," "middle aged," "broad spectrum social values," "credibility with women and minorities," and "tough and resilient and hard working."
This is not the first time Oprah has been billed as a potential candidate for president. Author and documentary-maker Michael Moore has set up a petition to persuade her to run. "Isn't it time we had a winner on our side?" asks Moore at the top of the petition. "America loves Oprah. She's got good politics, a great heart - and she'll have us all exercising AND reading! This can't be a bad thing." And now there is a dedicated website to the cause of persuading Oprah to run, called Oprah For President 2008.
Fulghum is a Unitarian Minister - a religious derivation of Christianity which acknowledges the moral authority but not the deity of Jesus - and the author who rose to fame when his 1986 manifesto Everything I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten stayed on the The New York Times Bestseller List for over two years. Publisher's Weekly has describred Fulghum's musings as "those we all wish were true."
"Fulghum shows a simpler way to look at those things we confront in life," says Victoria Tarrani from Florida, the state which went to the Republicans over much dispute in the controversial 2000 presidential election.
Fulghum's views gained momentum after being picked up by political blog aggregator Pajamas Media and are billed to rock the liberal blogosphere. He also declared that the Republicans were most likely to elect Senator McCain, who he acknowledged "could win."