Oprah Winfrey became emotional -- and even cried -- while talking to Barbara Walters about her long-time best friend Gayle King, all the while denying rumors the two have been in a gay relationship for years, saying she's "not lesbian ... not even kinda lesbian. "
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The clip, which aired on ABC's Good Morning America Wednesday, was part of an hour-long interview the network plans to run with the two broadcasting icons in a primetime special on Thursday.
Asked by Walters about her relationship with King, Winfrey was careful, yet emotional, with her words; after an awkwardly long pause, Winfrey said, "She is .... the mother I never had. She is the sister everyone would want. She is the friend that everyone deserves.
"I don't know a better person," Winfrey said, breaking into tears. "I don't know a better person.”
Winfrey told Walters she was so emotional her answer "because I'm thinking about how much I've never told her that."
And as for those lesbian rumors that won't seem to go away?
"I have said, 'We are not gay' enough times," Winfrey said. "I'm not lesbian, I'm not even kinda lesbian."
She said the rumors irritate her "because somebody must think I'm lying, number one; number two is, why would I deny it? That is not the way I run my life."
Following the excerpt of the chat, Walters noted that Winfrey lives with her longtime lover, hunky Stedman Graham.
Winfrey's longtime talk show comes to an end this season; she launches her new Oprah Winfrey Network on cable New Year's Day.