Gay icon Cher has expanded on why she turned down an offer to perform at the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Cher first made the revelation in a wide-ranging interview with Canadian weekly Maclean's.

“I can't name names but my friend called who is a big oligarch over there, and asked me if I'd like to be an ambassador for the Olympics and open the show,” Cher told the magazine. “I immediately said no. I want to know why all of this gay hate just exploded over there. He said the Russian people don't feel the way the government does.”

In a television interview with CBS Sunday Morning, Cher told Anthony Mason that she turned down the effort because “you can't cross that line.”

“Which line?” Mason asked.

“The gay line, you just can't,” she replied. “My gay following has kept me in the old days alive. You know, when no one else came to see me. I've had really bad times.”

“They've always been there?”

“Always,” Cher said. (Watch the entire segment at

(Related: Russians dismiss Cher's Olympic snub over Russia's “gay hate.”)