President Trump once named television personality Oprah Winfrey as his top pick for the vice presidency before winning the White House.
Trump’s 1999 remarks about Winfrey resurfaced on Monday amid speculation she may seek the Oval Office in 2020.
“Oprah, I love Oprah,” he told CNN. “Oprah would always be my first choice. I’ll tell you, she’s really a great woman. She’s a terrific woman. She’s somebody that’s very special.”
“If she’d do it, she’d be fantastic,” Trump continued. “She’s popular, she’s brilliant, she’s a wonderful woman.”
Trump’s remarks came before he sought the Reform Party’s presidential nomination in 2000 before ultimately leaving that year’s White House race.
Two of Winfrey’s close friends on Monday told CNN that the former talk show host is “actively thinking” about running for president.
One source added that Winfrey had been discussing the idea with confidants for several months, before emphasizing that she had not made a decision on the matter.
Winfrey’s longtime partner Stedman Graham on Sunday told The Los Angeles Times she is open to seeking the presidency.
“It’s up to the people,” he said after her much-lauded speech at the Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California. “She would absolutely do it.”
Winfrey’s remarks at the 75th Golden Globes sparked rampant speculation she may mount a future presidential bid.
“I want all the girls watching here and now to know that a new day is on the horizon,” she told listeners.
“And when the new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women, many of whom are right here in this room tonight, and some pretty phenomenal men fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say, ‘me too’ again.”
Winfrey was addressing the #MeToo movement, which began last year with women worldwide publicly sharing their experiences with sexual misconduct.
Sexual misconduct allegations have since disgraced multiple powerful men across entertainment, politics, the media and sports.