Mueller, Putin and Trump should be Time’s persons of the year

Mueller, Putin and Trump should be Time’s persons of the year
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With more investigation bombshells appearing to be imminent from Robert Mueller and his special counsel team, Time magazine is poised to name its “Person of the Year.”                                                                                        

Time should choose Mueller, Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSecret Service members who helped organize Pence Arizona trip test positive for COVID-19: report Trump administration planning pandemic office at the State Department: report Iran releases photo of damaged nuclear fuel production site: report MORE as its “Persons of the Year. They are the three great players in the battle to preserve and protect liberal democracy in the continuing attack by Russia against our democratic system and national unity. 


Putin is the Russian dictator who wages aggressive war through weapons of modern technology against democracy in America and Europe. Trump is the president who was elected with the support of Putin, and now faces a high-intensity investigation that will determine the fate of his presidency.  Mueller leads the investigation into Putin’s attack against America, and is a bulwark of democracy working to fairly determine whether or not Americans are implicated in this war of the worlds between Putin’s ambitions and America’s democracy. 


There is good precedent for Time magazine choosing more than one “Person of the Year.” In 1983, at the height of the Cold War, Time choose both Ronald Reagan, then the president of the United States, and Yuri Andropov, then the leader of the Soviet Union and former boss of the KGB. 

My other choice for “Persons of the Year” would be the women in Alabama, on behalf of women across the nation, who have shown the courage to come forward to reveal how they had been abused by predatory men.

The Alabama Senate election on Dec. 12 will bring a profound and enormously consequential moment. Roy Moore is an extremist who appeals to intolerance and bigotry and stands accused of predatory abuse by multiple women, one of whom was only 14 years old at the time of the alleged offense.  

It is revolting to watch a president who has been accused of predatory abuse by multiple women supporting a Senate candidate who has been accused of predatory abuse by multiple women. These women are highly credible. Their courage provides an inspiration to women everywhere and an education to many men. They would be worthy and noble choices for “Persons of the Year.”

There is relevant precedent for Time magazine choosing these courageous women. In 1975, as the movement for women’s rights was gaining steam, Time choose American Women!

The idea of choosing Mueller, Putin and Trump first occurred to me when I read that conservative commentator Bill Kristol hopes that Mueller will be named “Person of the Year” for 2018. The real battle is between Mueller and Putin; the purpose of the investigation is to determine whether or not anyone associated with Trump bears legal responsibility.  

Few events will have more impact on the future of American democracy than the investigation of the Russian attack against our democracy by Mueller, his special counsel team, and the grand jury that is evaluating the evidence in this scandal. 

As you read these words, rumors are swirling across official Washington about “who will be next” to be indicted, or to reach plea bargains, involving the Mueller investigation. Dinner tables across the nation involve family discussions about “who will be next” in the revelations of abuse by predatory men against women, or predatory men against other men.

In one of the most absurd moments of the year, there is even controversy about whether or not Trump declined to be named “Person of the Year.”

In recent days Trump has again attacked the free press by again attacking CNN and MSNBC. He has given a Twitter promotion to a racist British hate group and was then reprimanded by the British prime minister.  He has apparently revived the birther lie that former President Obama was not born in America, and begun to claim that he never said his abusive words on the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape, for which he had previously apologized.

Trump has acted so strangely so often that there is quiet talk throughout official Washington about why the president behaves in such unnatural ways on such a regular basis.

As 2017 (fortunately) comes to a close, Time magazine has a wealth of candidates to be chosen “Person of the Year.” Time could choose the three men engaged in the epic battle over the future of democracy, or the women engaged in the epic struggle against predatory abuse, or other worthy possibilities.

Whomever Time chooses, let’s hope that tomorrow is better than today. The sooner, the better!

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Texas) and former Rep. Bill Alexander (D-Ark.), who was chief deputy majority whip of the U.S. House of Representatives. He holds an LLM in international financial law from the London School of Economics.