US President-elect Donald Trump was today named TIME's 'Person of the Year 2016' for his stunning victory in the presidential polls. Interestingly, he was described as 'President of the Divided States of America'.
For the annual honour, TIME's editors chose Trump from among world leaders, artists, corporate tycoons, and path-breaking organisations as the person who had the greatest influence, for better or worse, on the events of the year. Trump, who has appeared on numerous TIME covers already, will now feature as 'Person of the Year', with the sub-headline 'President of the Divided States of America.'
Trump told NBC'ss news programme TODAY minutes after TIME announced on the show that he was 'Person of the Year 2016':
It's a great honour. It means a lot. I have grown up reading TIME magazine, it's a very important magazine. It is a tremendous honour, I am lucky to be on the cover of TIME in the past.
However, about the tagline, Trump said he has not done anything to divide the country.
I didn't divide America. We are going to put it back together. We are going to build up our military and we are going to be an economic powerhouse, he said.
The first runner-up is Trump's rival in the presidential elections and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, who TIME said made history for three decades as an advocate, a First Lady, a Senator, and a Secretary of State, but she will now be remembered as much for what she didn't do as for what she did.
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among the 11 candidates shortlisted for TIME's annual honour. Modi won the online readers' poll conducted by the magazine for the second time. The other runners-up are the online hackers, who in 2016 "took aim at American democracy itself," Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who "survived a coup attempt to emerge stronger than ever," CRISPR scientists who developed a groundbreaking new technology that can edit DNA, and pop icon Beyonce who "publicly embraced explicitly feminist blackness at a politically risky moment."
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TIME Editor-in-Chief Nancy Gibbs said Trump was chosen for the honour "for reminding America that demagoguery feeds on despair and that truth is only as powerful as the trust in those who speak it, for empowering a hidden electorate by mainstreaming its furies and live-streaming its fears, and for framing tomorrow's political culture by demolishing yesterday's." TIME said Trump's "next test" will be delivering upon the voters' expectations on bringing about change in the country.
The year 2016 was the year of his rise; 2017 will be the year of his rule, and like all newly elected leaders, he has a chance to fulfil promises and defy expectations, it said.