Oprah Backing Obama Not Necessarily Swaying Female East Texas Voters - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/27/07-Tyler

Oprah Backing Obama Not Necessarily Swaying Female East Texas Voters

Oprah Winfrey will be plunging herself into politics in a way she hasn't done before: By campaigning for Democrat Presidential Candidate Barack Obama.

"It makes me think of them because the media is a really big part of everything so when you hear about names it stick in your head, so it does influence you," said 18-year-old Allison Aragon, who will be voting for the first time next year.

But is Oprah's endorsement, which she already made public last spring, enough to get East Texas voters to punch Obama's ticket?

"No it wouldn't," said voter Rose Garrett. "I'd vote for the person I thought was the best candidate."

Voter Lisa Smith added, "[Oprah] has as much knowledge as I do when it comes to politics.  I would trust my own instincts and do my own opinion."

The female vote is said to be the prime target here.  One that Obama will be fighting for with political rival Hillary Clinton.

"Hillary Clinton simply seems to be the women's candidate, regardless of race. I think that's what Obama may really be trying to reach is women," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

Which is where Oprah comes in. And while women hang on to "O's" every word, it'll be a tough sell when it comes to who she wants to see in the White House.

"I don't know," said voter Kim Currey when asked if Obama is one of the candidates she would voter for. "I'm still figuring out what I want to do, so I don't know."

Rose added, "I'm just looking and listening to everybody. But I don't listen to Oprah. I listen to what I think."

We spoke with a number of women on and off camera.  Only one said she would be influenced to vote for Obama because of Oprah's backing.

Late Tuesday afternoon, singer Barbara Streisand publicly threw in her support for Hillary Clinton.

Christine Nelson reporting. cnelson@kltv.com 

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