Who Will Win Time Person of the Year For 2023?
Betting sites have cast Elon Musk as the heavy favourite to be named Time Person of the Year 2023 following the businessman’s controversial takeover of Twitter, and efforts to influence the global tech industry.
Musk, 51, was Time’s 2021 Person of the Year after becoming the richest person in the world and launching his SpaceX initiative.
Since then, the businessman has become even more of a household name thanks to his $43bn takeover of Twitter.
Time award their Person of the Year gong to the person, persons or groups that it believes have been most influential to society over the past 12 months.
Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelenskyy won it in 2022, beating the likes of Vladimir Putin, Queen Elizabeth II and Donald Trump to the honour.
Calling it an honour may not be strictly speaking correct, though. After all, Time Magazine’s award isn’t for the best person, just the most influential.
Previous winners of the award include President Putin in 2007, Joseph Stalin (twice) and Adolf Hitler in 1938.
Musk is no politician but his influence stretches far and wide. Since the South African bought Twitter he has used the platform to air his sometimes controversial views, and has tried to alter the way the platform works.
Critics have taken aim at Musk for slashing the Twitter workforce, reducing the platform’s social and corporate responsibility obligations, and changing algorithms.
Still, Twitter is not the world, and Musk’s influence stretches far greater than a social media site of just 450 million monthly users.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was named 2010 Time Person of the Year, with the social media site passing half a billion users.
The winner of 2023 will be announced in December, so we’re still a good way off knowing Time’s decision.
But that hasn’t stopped bookmakers from drafting their latest odds on specials betting sites for each candidate…
At 6/4, UK bookmakers have been quick to throw Musk in as the favourite here. But rarely do people win Time Person of the Year more than once.
In fact, Musk would be in pretty strange company were he to get the gong again. The other ‘multiple winners’ are:
- Franklin D. Roosevelt (1932, 1934, 1941)
- Joseph Stalin (1939, 1942)
- George C. Marshall (1943, 1947)
- Harry S. Truman (1945, 1948)
- Sir Winston Churchill (1940, 1949)
- Dwight D. Eisenhower (1944, 1959)
- Lyndon B. Johnson (1964, 1967)
- Richard Nixon (1971, 1972)
- Ronald Regan (1980, 1983)
- Deng Xiaoping (1978, 1985)
- Mikhail Gorbachev (1987, 1989)
- Bill Clinton (1992, 1998)
- George W. Bush (2000, 2004)
- Barack Obama (2008, 2012)
Most of the multiple winners of this award are former US presidents, which makes sense when you consider Time is an American magazine.
But multiple winners have become fewer and fewer in recent decades. Only George W Bush and Barack Obama have won on multiple occasions this century.
Another candidate for the Time gong, having won it before, is incumbent president Joe Biden.
At 10/3 with political betting sites, he’s just behind Musk in the running, but his influence in 2023 hasn’t exactly been impactful.
Indeed, Biden is struggling for support at home, and America’s global presence has certainly dwindled since the Covid-19 pandemic.
Biden appears a strange choice here, but the bookies are likely hedging their bets.
After all, it doesn’t take much for a US president to suddenly be at the forefront of global affairs. And there are still plenty of months remaining in 2023.
The winner in 2022 could well claim this award again. President Zelenskyy has the backing of the West, and his Ukrainian army has already proved highly effective in fighting off Russian aggression.
Zelenskyy often goes on public relations tours in Europe to generate further support for Ukraine, and his efforts aren’t going unnoticed. Available at 5/1, he’s a strong contender here.
The protests that swept Iran in late 2021 continued for almost a year, and protestors are still expressing their deep anger against the ruling Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and president Ebrahim Raisi’s government.
While the majority of the protests have been quelled for now, fresh dissent is still erupting in the country.
Iran has killed at least 481 protestors and the death penalty has been used as punishment in court trials.
But the population appears not to be cowed by the aggression. Bookies price them at 7/1 to be named Time Persons of the Year.
The United States treasury secretary has a near-impossible job on her hands.
Janet Yellen is tasked with steering the country through choppy economic waters, while also fending off Chinese and Russian economic aggression.
Yellen is as much a skilled politician as she is a top-class economist and she’s 15/2 to get the Time gong.
The US Attorney General has a lot on his plate. Merrick Garland gets dragged into plenty of political issues, and right now has a brief that covers Ukraine, Julian Assange and Donald Trump.
His presence in the various Trump controversies that threaten to land the former president in hot water hasn’t gone unnoticed.
He’s not expected to prosecute Trump, but were he to have a role in the businessman’s fall from grace then his odds here could well come in shorter than 9/1 with new betting sites.
King Charles III
He’s being crowned this summer and Charles III isn’t hanging about now he’s king.
The British monarch has already waded into the climate debate since he succeeded his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II.
He’s also done a tour of a number of European countries, including a rare trip to Germany, and appears to be thriving in the role. King Charles is 9/1 to be Time Person of the Year 2023.
At 10/1 with betting apps, Xi Jinping is an outside bet to be Time Person of the Year and, let’s be honest, it’s a surprise he hasn’t been given the award before.
The Chinese president has been in the post since 2013, and has been instrumental in China’s emergence as a superpower over the past decade.
Now with his eyes on Hong Kong, Taiwan and other territories, Xi Jinping cannot be ignored by the Time judges.
What’s more, his warm relations with Russian president Vladimir Putin has exposed his stance in the Ukraine war.
President Xi says there needs to be peace talks, but Ukraine insists they won’t come to the table unless they can reclaim all territory stolen by Russia.
How far Xi is prepared to go to prop up Russia remains to be seen. But China’s role in ending the war could well be crucial.
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