Joe Biden campaigned to break the divide in the US after four years of Trump. Time magazine has now given him and his future Vice President Harris a first prize – and a memory.
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Future US President Joe Biden (78) and future Vice President Kamala Harris (56) have been named People of the Year by Time magazine. Rock superstar Bruce Springsteen (71) announced this on NBC on Thursday evening (local time). “Time,” said editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal, referring to the two award winners: “The next four years will be a tremendous test for them and for all of us to see if they can achieve the unity promised.”
In the presidential election on November 3, Democrat Biden had won against incumbent Republican Donald Trump. Trump has so far refused to acknowledge his defeat. In the election campaign, Biden had advertised, among other things, that he wanted to overcome the deep divisions in the US. Biden served as Vice President under Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama from 2009 to 2017. Harris – who is currently in the US Senate – will be the first woman, the first black, and the first American with South Asian roots to serve as vice president. Biden and Harris will be sworn in in Washington on January 20.
Felsenthal wrote on the Time Magazine page, “Perhaps the only thing Americans agree on right now is that the country’s future is at stake, even as they argue vehemently about why.” If Trump had been a “divisive” over the past four years, Biden and Harris showed where the US was headed: “a mix of ethnicities, life experiences, and worldviews that must work together to find a way forward if the US experiment is to survive. In short comments on the NBC broadcast, Biden and Harris thanked them for the honor.
Top American virologist also shortlisted
Also shortlisted for “Person of the Year” were Donald Trump, prominent US health expert Anthony Fauci, along with health workers for their commitment to the Corona crisis and the “Black Lives Matter” movement. The death of African American George Floyd in a brutal police operation in Minneapolis, Minnesota in late May sparked months of protests against racism.
Last year, the then 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg was the youngest person ever to be named Person of the Year by Time magazine. Titled since 1927, Time’s editorial team honors the personalities of world affairs who have had the greatest influence over the past year. For example, in 2015 – the year of the refugee crisis – Chancellor Angela Merkel was named Person of the Year.
A year later, Donald Trump took the credit after winning the US presidential election. In 2018, murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was named Person of the Year along with other reporters. Past events have included Queen Elizabeth II, Nobel Peace laureate Nelson Mandela, and Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin.