Oprah goes door-to-door to campaign for Georgia candidate
President Trump and former President Obama also will campaign in Georgia.
Marietta, Georgia -- "Georgia, you've been on my mind!" billionaire icon Oprah Winfrey told a cheering crowd in Marietta, Georgia, Thursday as she brought her star power to help elect Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams.
After walking on stage to a huge standing ovation, Winfrey told roughly 400 men and women why she's supporting Abrams.
"I was just sitting at home in California minding my own business but I could not stop thinking about what's going on down here," Winfrey said at the first of two town hall campaign events for Abrams.
Winfrey said she reached out to Abrams and asked to campaign for her because Abrams stands for values that matter.
Winfrey said she wanted to call Abrams but didn’t have her number, so she asked around until she got Abrams’ cell phone and called three days ago. “Girl, let me pull over to the side of the road!” Winfrey recalled Abrams saying.
She added that her mission was personal.
"Nobody paid for me to come here, nobody even asked me to come here, I paid for myself and I approve this message."
"I am an independent woman," Winfrey said. "I've earned the right to think for myself and to vote for myself, and that's why I am a registered independent."
Winfrey said she came because she likes Abrams’ positions on Medicaid, gun control, affordable housing, among other issues, and that Abrams will “serve the underserved.” She said she’s here “to support a change maker.”
After Winfrey spoke for roughly 20 minutes, Abrams was brought out and the two sat on chairs as Winfrey asked Abrams to explain her positions on the issues.
Winfrey asked what being in debt has taught Abrams. Abrams said she’s learned you don’t have to walk away from responsibilities, and told the crowd that even though she’s on a payment plan with the IRS and has debt, “I know how to manage a budget.” Abrams added she has to do more with less. She also said no one has ever had to sue her to get their money.
The events are billed as "a conversation on the critical value of women in leadership and what is at stake for our communities in the election.”
The second event is Thursday afternoon in Decatur, Georgia.
Abrams hopes to make history on Election Day by becoming the first African-American female elected governor in U.S. history.
Winfrey is the latest high-profile figure to campaign in the state’s close gubernatorial race. Former President Barack Obama will also campaign for Abrams this week and comedian/actor Will Ferrell went door-knocking for Abrams last week.
Before the event Abrams thanked Winfrey in a statement, saying she said has "inspired so many."
"Oprah Winfrey has inspired so many of us through the years with her unparalleled ability to form real connections and strengthen the bonds of family and community. I am honored to have Oprah join me for uplifting and honest conversations with voters about the clear choice before us in this election and the boundless potential of Georgians," Abrams said in the statement.
Vice President Pence was campaign in Georgia Thursday, campaigning for Abrams’s opponent, Republican nominee Brian Kemp, President Trump was set to do so as well before Election Day.
After saying he had "heard Ophrah was in town," Pence accused Abrams of being "bankrolled by Hollywood liberals."He said he had a "message for Abrams' Hollywood friends: This ain't Hollywood."
Abrams and Kemp are running to replace outgoing GOP Gov. Nathan Dean, who is term-limited.
ABC News' Deena Zaru contributed to this report.
US Rep. Lauren Boebert's son arrested in connection with string of vehicle break-ins, police say
- Feb 28, 11:34 AM
ABC News Live
24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events