Donald Trump Named Time's Person of the Year

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"When have we ever seen a single individual who has so defied expectations, broken the rules, violated norms, beaten not one but two political parties on the way to winning an election that he entered with 100-to-1 odds against him?" said editor Nancy Gibbs of the magazine's pick, which she called "straightforward."

Time magazine on Wednesday named President-elect Donald Trump its Person of the Year.

"It's a great honor. It means a lot," Trump said in a telephone interview on NBC's Today show.

The magazine's managing editor, Nancy Gibbs, said on the program that Democrat Hillary Clinton was the No. 2 finalist. Gibbs said the choice of Trump this year was "straightforward."

"When have we ever seen a single individual who has so defied expectations, broken the rules, violated norms, beaten not one but two political parties on the way to winning an election that he entered with 100-to-1 odds against him?" Gibbs said.

The Time cover reads, "Donald Trump: President of the Divided States of America" and the image features the president-elect sitting in his private residence at Trump Tower.

In the NBC interview, Trump took issue with the "Divided States of America" description: "I didn't divide 'em," he said. "We're going to put it back together and we're going to have a country that's very well-healed."

Gibbs said Time gives the title to the person who has had the greatest influence on events "for better or worse."

Trump went from fiery underdog in the race for the GOP presidential nomination to defeating Clinton in the Nov. 8 election. Trump won 306 electoral votes, easily enough to make him president when the electors meet Dec. 19. Clinton won the popular vote.

Gibbs said Clinton "came closer than any woman ever has to winning the White House, and in the process revealed, I think, both the opportunities and the obstacles that women face in the public square."

The No. 3 spot finalized for Person of the Year was "The Hackers," which Gibbs said referred to "a new cyber security threat we saw this year of state-sponsored hackers looking to delegitimize an American election." She said this was "something new this year and something very disturbing." The No. 4 spot went to Recep Tayyip Erdogan, No. 5 went to the CRISPR pioneers and No. 6 went to Beyonce.

In his Time interview, Trump talked about a range of issues from immigration to the economy to his relationship with President Obama. He also revealed a new dimension of his views on healthcare, saying he wants to "bring down drug prices."

As for immigration, Trump again vowed to build his much-discussed wall but indicated that he was still trying to work out who'd be allowed to cross the border.

"We’re also going to have people coming across the borders because we need workers," Trump said. "We have to be able to have people come in to our country, because that’s good for all of us. It’s good for them, but it’s good for all of us. But we’re going to have very strong borders. We’re not going to have illegals coming in. But we’re going to have people coming in, but we’re also going to have them coming in based to a certain extent on merit."

He also expressed support for young undocumented immigrants granted work permits through an Obama executive decision.

"I want Dreamers for our children also," Trump added. "We’re going to work something out. On a humanitarian basis it’s a very tough situation. We’re going to work something out that’s going to make people happy and proud. But that’s a very tough situation."

And Trump, who's indicated he's a fan of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, said that he sees the team's coach, Bill Belicheck, as a model of "a great leader."

"I don’t think there’s one way of leading people," Trump said. "I think if you talk — and I mention him because he was so great to me — but if you mention, like, a great leader is a Coach Belichick. I guarantee you he deals with different people in a different way. He’ll deal with Tom Brady differently than he’s going to deal with some rookie that just came in, and they don’t know whether or not he’s going to make it. It’s a different form of leadership."

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