Oprah Winfrey steps away from ‘60 Minutes’ as she hits the campaign trail for Georgia Democrat

TV personality and media mogul Oprah Winfrey is leaving her part-time role at the CBS News program “60 Minutes” after announcing she will campaign for Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.

Winfrey joined “60 Minutes” in early 2017 as a special contributor, appearing in several segments on the top-rated prime-time news program last season. But the network confirmed Wednesday that the news division’s policy requires her to step away due to her upcoming political activities.

“Oprah Winfrey and CBS News have agreed that she will step away from her contributor role at ‘60 Minutes’ during this campaign season, in keeping with CBS News standards,” a network representative said in a statement.


CBS News did not reveal a date when Winfrey could return in a formal role within the division. She does not have any pieces in production for the current “60 Minutes” season.

Winfrey’s previous “60 Minutes” stories included a report on the movement to reduce solitary confinement in prisons, the treatment of childhood trauma, and a round table discussion with Michigan voters about the country’s political divide.

Abrams, a Democrat who is locked in a tough battle for the Georgia statehouse and stands a chance of becoming the country’s first African American woman governor, announced Wednesday she has received Winfrey’s endorsement.

Winfrey is scheduled to visit Cobb County on Thursday to campaign with Abrams, whose Republican opponent is Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

Winfrey has endorsed political candidates in the past, including former President Obama and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. The former talk show host has publicly disputed reports that she is interested in making a run for the White House.

Twitter: @SteveBattaglio