Time Magazine named President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris its 2020 Person of the Year.
Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal wrote that it was the first time the magazine included a vice president as its Person of the Year, and that Biden, who is 78, is among the oldest people to have been selected.
— TIME (@TIME) December 11, 2020
“For changing the American story, for showing that the forces of empathy are greater than the furies of division, for sharing a vision of healing in a grieving world, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are TIME’s 2020 Person of the Year,” Felsenthal wrote.
Typically, the person of the year is an individual, and in 2019, it was climate activist Greta Thunberg, who was the youngest person ever named. But groups, movements and ideas that were influential for any given year can also be selected.
Time released a shortlist Thursday that included President Donald Trump, frontline health care workers, Dr. Anthony Fauci and the movement for racial justice as candidates. (RELATED: Time Magazine Named Climate Activist Greta Thunberg Its ‘Person Of The Year,’ But What Is The Magazine’s Carbon Footprint?)
Felsenthal highlighted the impact that the former rivals-turned-running-mates had throughout 2020, specifically the campaign’s message of unity during a pandemic and polarization.
“The task before the new Administration is immense: a pandemic to confront, an economy to fix, a climate crisis to tackle, alliances to rebuild, deep skepticism to overcome with many Americans dubious about unity with Trump voters, and an opposition party still very much under Trump’s sway,” Felsenthal wrote.
“This will be the test of the next four years: Americans who haven’t been this divided in more than a century elected two leaders who have bet their success on finding common ground,” he continued.