TORONTO — Oprah Winfrey may have been instrumental in getting Barack Obama elected president, but now claims she's on the sidelines.
"I have not said one thing about this political situation and don't intend to," Winfrey said. "Everybody knows that I was a big campaigner for Obama and I still am. I think he's doing a great job. I think that it's the toughest job in the world with the economy and health care and all of that."
Obama has faced some strong resistance to his health care reform plans in recent weeks. On Monday he was addressing the country's economic woes with a speech in New York to outline financial changes meant to avert another crisis like the one that sent the global economy into a tailspin a year ago.
Winfrey made her comments Sunday night at the premiere of "Precious" at the Toronto International Film Festival. Winfrey is the executive producer of the movie, adapted from Sapphire's novel "Push."
"Precious" tells the story of an overweight, illiterate young woman who goes through some unimaginable hardships but eventually feels redeemed. Winfrey acknowledged that she was also the victim of these types of domestic and social abuses to some degree. Yet she said it doesn't matter who is in office when it comes to finding solutions.
"I think that the message of this film is that those problems are not solved by government," said Winfrey, host of "The Oprah Winfrey Show." "The character of the film didn't suffer because of government, she suffered because she was never loved."
As far as the government is concerned, Winfrey feels that she did her part to institute change.
In 2006, before Obama announced his candidacy, Winfrey shed her apolitical stance by endorsing him. Her media clout helped propel his appeal to the nation and gave him an edge in the primaries.
"My job was to make people, or allow people, to be introduced to Obama, who might not have been, at the time," she said. "I wanted him elected, and I think I did that."
On the Net: