President-elect Donald Trump isn’t protesting the media this time as Time magazine named him Person of the Year on Wednesday. While he’s been talking about the ‘dishonest’ mainstream media, this is one time where he feels they’ve got it right.
Trump made a stink last year when he was passed over as 2015’s most significant person for German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Of course, he had something to say about the sub-heading of “President of the Divided States of America,” and was quick to say that the state of the country wasn’t his fault. It was interesting to hear him be so quick to not lay claim that as he’s been quick to take claim on the Carrier deal along with the recent SoftBank $50 billion investment. If it’s a positive thing, he’ll happily take the credit it seems.
When Time tapped Merkel for the honor last year, Trump tweeted: “I told you @TIME Magazine would never pick me as person of the year despite being the big favorite They picked person who is ruining Germany.”
“It’s a great honor. It means a lot,” Trump said in a telephone interview on NBC’s “Today” show. He quickly added that he’ll be announcing his choice for secretary of state in a “few more days.”
Time editor Nancy Gibbs said on the program that Democrat Hillary Clinton was the No. 2 finalist. Gibbs said the choice of Trump this year was “straightforward.”
“When have we ever seen a single individual who has so defied expectations, broken the rules, violated norms, beaten not one but two political parties on the way to winning an election that he entered with 100-to-1 odds against him?” Gibbs said.
The Time cover reads, “Donald Trump: President of the Divided States of America” and the cover image features a photograph of the president-elect sitting in his private residence at Trump Tower.
“For those who believe this is all for the better, Trump’s victory represents a long-overdue rebuke to an entrenched and arrogant governing class; for those who see it as for the worse, the destruction extends to cherished norms of civility and discourse, a politics poisoned by vile streams of racism, sexism, nativism,” the magazine said. “To his believers, he delivers change — broad, deep, historic change, not modest measures doled out in Dixie cups; to his detractors, he inspires fear both for what he may do and what may be done in his name.”
In the NBC interview, Trump took issue with the “Divided States of America” description: “I didn’t divide ’em,” he said. “We’re going to put it back together, and we’re going to have a country that’s very well healed.”
Trump also said that he asks predecessor President Obama for his views on some of his prospective appointments, telling NBC that “I have asked him what he would think of this one and that one.”
Trump also said that one of his critics — 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney — remains a contender for the secretary of State position.
“It’s not about revenge,” Trump told NBC. “It’s about what’s good for the country. And I’m able to put this stuff behind us.”
Gibbs said Time gives the title to the person who has had the greatest influence on events “for better or worse.”
Trump went from fiery underdog in the race for the GOP presidential nomination to defeating Clinton in the Nov. 8 election. Trump won 306 electoral votes, easily enough to make him president when the electors meet on Dec. 19. Clinton won the popular vote.
Gibbs said Clinton “came closer than any woman ever has to winning the White House, and in the process revealed, I think, both the opportunities and the obstacles that women face in the public square.”
The Person of the Year designation is the 10th time that Time magazine has put Trump on its cover, a list dating back to 1989.
Runner-up for Time‘s Person of the Year: Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, who narrowly lost the 2016 presidential election to Trump.
The No.3 finalized for the Person of the Year was “The Hackers,” which Gibbs said referred to “a new cyber security threat we saw this year of state-sponsored hackers looking to delegitimize an American election.” She said this was “something new this year and something very disturbing.”