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Putin, Xi, and Taylor Swift make Time's 'Person of the Year' shortlist

The inclusion of Putin, in particular, presents a stunning contrast to the magazine's 2022 selection of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and the "spirit of Ukraine."

Published: December 4, 2023 6:04pm

Time Magazine has unveiled its nine finalists for 2023's Person of the Year, with the ultimate recipient of the honor set to be announced on Wednesday.

Among the finalists are Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, King Charles III, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, and musician Taylor Swift. The shortlist also includes "Barbie," the Hollywood strikers, and the myriad prosecutors of former President Donald Trump.

The finalists were first announced Monday morning on NBC's "Today" show.

The inclusion of Putin, in particular, presents a stunning contrast to the magazine's 2022 selection of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and the "spirit of Ukraine." The Russian invasion has persisted throughout the year and recent developments on the front have prompted concerns of a Muscovite breakthrough. Putin also managed to survive a full-blown rebellion by the Wagner mercenary group under the late Yevgeny Prigozhin.

Swift, meanwhile, has maintained her presence in the headlines via her "Eras" tour, which has already become one of the highest-grossing global tours in musical history.

Powell landed a slot on the list due to his efforts to combat inflation, while Charles's position came after he ascended the British throne in May. The Hollywood strikes disrupted much of the film industry this year, but ultimately resumed work after securing concessions from studios. Altman made the list for his brief ouster and swift return to Open AI while Barbie earned recognition for its substantial box office draw.

An article in Today pointed to Xi's recent meeting with President Joe Biden in San Francisco and the pair's efforts to ease mounting diplomatic tensions between China and the U.S.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter.

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