Time releases list of Person of the Year finalists

Time has announced the short list of the people who may be named the publication’s Person of the Year.

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Ten people have been selected as the finalists for the magazine’s honor, the “Today” show reported.

Editors said the people on the list had the most influence on the world.

Time will announce its Person of the Year on Wednesday.

Here are the names of the newsmakers chosen by Time’s editors:

Xi Jinping

Xi Jinping, the president of China, met with Russian president Vladimir Putin before the 2022 Winter Olympics, where the two world leaders showed a united front against what they called “external forces.” Xi called Putin an “old friend” and said that China supported Russia’s “core interest” during the height of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Chinese military fired ballistic missiles around Taiwan during military drills as a response to the visit by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan. Xi had asked President Joe Biden to dissuade Pelosi from making the trip, The Washington Post reported. Biden told Xi that he did not have that power, explaining to the Chinese president that the Congress was a separate branch. Biden also had warned Xi from taking actions if Pelosi made the trip.

Xi was selected to be China’s communist party leader for a third, five-year term in October. The communist party is the only political party in China, Forbes reported.

This is the second time Xi had been on the list for Time’s person of the year. The first was in 2019.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the comedian-turned-president of Ukraine. Zelenskyy became a household name after the invasion of his country by Russia in February, going to the front lines or celebrating with the Ukrainian people as Russian troops pulled out of the area surrounding Kherson.

Zelenskyy addressed the U.S. Congress virtually from Kyiv in March, asking for a no-fly zone and invoking memories of when the U.S. was attacked during Pearl Harbor and September 11, CNN reported.

The Ukrainian president called the invasion by Russia “war crimes” in April and when Russia announced it would seize four regions in Ukraine, called it a “farce,” saying that “the entire territory of our country will be liberated.”

Zelenskyy applied for NATO membership, and while Ukraine’s application is being accelerated, it is not clear if and when Ukraine will be accepted by the international alliance, CNN reported.

U.S. Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court is among the 10 finalists after several laws were struck down, namely Roe v. Wade, despite the majority of Americans disagreeing with the decision as found by Pew Research. The high court also clarified that the Second Amendment allows people to carry firearms outside the home.

The court also started the term with its first Black female justice, Ketanji Brown Jackson.

Elon Musk

Elon Musk was named Time’s Person of the year in 2021 when the magazine’s editor-in-chief said that the Tesla founder “is reshaping life on Earth and possibly life off Earth as well,” “Today” reported.

Musk has purchased and changed Twitter after firing several top executives, laying off about half of Twitter’s 7,500 employees and making several changes to the social media platform.

MacKenzie Scott

The ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, MacKenzie Scott has taken her 4% stake in Amazon and turned it into something that can help the world, donating millions of dollars to charity.

Scott gave $122.6 million to Big Brothers Big Sisters of America to help children make strong connections with mentors across the country. The donation was the largest the organization had ever received.

In 2022, Scott has donated almost $2 billion to 343 organizations to help underserved communities, she wrote in a Medium post.

Liz Cheney

Rep. Liz Cheney has spearheaded the impeachment of former President Donald Trump after the events of Jan. 6, “Today” reported.

However, not all who have been working for the Jan. 6 committee are happy with how focused on Trump Cheney has appeared to become, The Washington Post reported. Weeks before the final report by the committee was scheduled to be released, the report is to focus mostly on Trump with other parts of the investigation being regulated to snippets, the Post reported.

Months after calling for Trump’s impeachment, Cheney was stripped of her No. 3 position in the GOP caucus before she lost her seat in the primary election to represent Wyoming. Trump-endorsed candidate, Harriet Hageman, won the primary.

Ron DeSantis

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis became a national political name after he restricted LGBTQ rights in schools by signing the Parental Rights in Education Act, which prohibits “classroom instruction” on sexual orientation and gender identity starting in kindergarten through third grade.

DeSantis also repealed House Bill No. 486 which allowed the Walt Disney Company special designation to self-govern, a bill that had been in place since 1967. DeSantis repealed the protection after Disney spoke out against the parental rights act, which some called the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, WFTV reported.

DeSantis won re-election handily when other GOP candidates struggled and is currently being called “a Trump alternative” during the lead-up to the 2024 election, despite not declaring his candidacy to run against the former president.

Janet Yellen

Janet Yellen was the first woman to become the secretary of the treasury. In 2022 as inflation loomed, Yellen was the person who explained the signs of a recession and developed preemptive financial policies. She also traveled around the country trying to gain support and confidence for President Joe Biden’s administration in a post-pandemic economy, “Today” reported.

Iran protestors

Protestors took to the street after the death of Mahsa Amini, an aspiring lawyer who had been in morality police custody. The police were enforcing mandatory dress codes.

After Amini’s death, women in Iran would not cover their heads, going so far as to cut their hair and burn their headscarves, “Today” reported.

Gun safety advocates

In a year of several shocking mass shootings, gun advocates have said enough is enough. With still a month to go in 2022, there had been more than 600 mass shootings in the U.S. including a racial attack at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, that left 10 people, all of whom were Black, dead, followed by the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 children and two teachers dead.

More than 450 gun safety demonstrations were held across the country on June 11 and just hours after the demonstrations, two senators from each side of the aisle announced a framework agreement for new gun legislation that promised “red flag” laws and enhanced background checks, “Today” reported.

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