The annual designation names figures who have impacted current events, and Trump previously received the title in 2016

By Emily Zauzmer
December 10, 2018 11:41 AM
Robert Mueller (left) and President Donald Trump
| Credit: Alex Wong/Getty; Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty

President Donald Trump and special counsel Robert Mueller, the man investigating his campaign, are both on the shortlist for Time Person of the Year in 2018.

The 10 nominees on the shortlist were announced on NBC News’ Todayon Monday. The annual designation names figures who have impacted current events. Trump previously received the title in 2016.

Vladimir Putin, who was named Person of the Year in 2007, was included on the list in part because Trump’s friendliness with the Russian president has come under scrutiny in the wake of Russia’s efforts to influence the outcome of the 2016 election.

Meghan Markle
| Credit: Marty Melville - Pool/Getty Images

In Finland in July, Trump insisted that “President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial” of Russian interference.

The March for Our Lives activists were among the 10 candidates. After the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School killed 17 people in February, the young activists turned their grief into action. They inspired thousands of people to demonstrate against gun violence in March and focused on voter registration afterward.

Meghan Markle made the cut after tying the knot with Prince Harry in May, getting started on her agenda to help women in the months since, and announcing her pregnancy in October.

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Other candidates include Christine Blasey Ford, the professor who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault before he was confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, and Jamal Khashoggi, the journalist who was killed in Instanbul.

Separated families were also nominated. The Trump administration provoked outrage this year for separating children from their parents when families tried to illegally enter the country at the border.

Christine Blasey Ford
| Credit: Erin Schaff/Getty

“If you don’t want your child separated, then don’t bring them across the border illegally,” former Attorney General Jeff Sessions said. “It’s not our fault that somebody does that.” Critics have called the policy cruel.

Ryan Coogler, the director who helmed Black Panther, and Moon Jae-in, South Korea’s president, were given nods as well.

The Person of the Year will be announced on Today on Tuesday.