Oprah Winfrey’s name has been floated as a possible replacement for Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., in the event the 89-year-old lawmaker retires before the end of her term next year, it was reported this week.
Questions have swirled about Feinstein’s health and her ability to serve in the Senate ever since she returned to Capitol Hill this month after a bout of shingles forced her to stay home in California for 10 weeks.
Feinstein has pledged to retire at the end of her current term, but The Associated Press indicated that several names have already been thrown into the mix should the California Democrat step aside early. One of those is reportedly billionaire TV host Winfrey.
After receiving blowback from some progressive groups for failing to appoint a Black woman to replace Vice President Kamala Harris, Newsom has sworn to do so if he got another chance to send someone to the Senate.
Early rumors suggested that he might turn to Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., who is running for Feinstein’s seat in a high-profile race against fellow California House Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff and Katie Porter. Lee has clinched the endorsement of multiple top left-wing lawmakers, including Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash.
But there appears to be some concern that Newsom could tip the electoral scales in Lee’s favor if he chooses her.
Winfrey’s potential political ambitions caused a furor in the run-up to the 2020 election, as many speculated she could launch her own White House bid.
But she ruled that out multiple times, including in a November 2018 speech campaigning for two-time Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.
“I am not here because I am making some grandstand, because I’m thinking about running myself,” Winfrey said at the time. “I don’t want to run. I am not trying to test any waters, don’t want to go in those waters.”
Fox News Digital has reached out to representatives for both Newsom and Winfrey for comment but did not immediately hear back.