Time magazine on Wednesday named President-elect Donald Trump its Person of the Year.
“It’s a great honor. It means a lot,” Trump told NBC’s “Today” show, although he took issue with the cover’s smaller headline calling him “the president of the divided states of America.”
Trump, in a call-in interview, told host Matt Lauer: “I didn’t divide them, they’re divided now. I mean there’s a lot of division and we’re going to put it back together.”
Time’s managing editor Nancy Gibbs noted the distinction is awarded to those who have influenced the year’s events for better or for worse, writing, “It’s hard to measure the scale of his disruption.” The magazine called Trump “the choice.”
Hillary Clinton, called “the aspirant,” was No. 2 on the list.
Trump, in his interview with Time, said he viewed those who voted him into office as the “forgotten” citizens of the country.
“These are great people, these are people that built this country, and they’ve been forgotten. They’re people that work hard, that they’re people that love the country,” he said. “And they didn’t like what was happening.”
He added that he wants to personally call the companies preparing to outsource their labor to persuade them to stay in the United States: “I want to get a list of companies that have announced they’re leaving. I can call them myself, five minutes apiece, they won’t be leaving.”
The Manhattan real estate developer also appeared to favor infrastructure investment and tax cuts as measures to stimulate the economy — an approach taken by President Barack Obama.
“Well, sometimes you have to prime the pump,” he said.
In the Time magazine interview, conducted at Manhattan’s Trump Tower, the president-elect also vowed to “bring down” prescription drug prices.
He said he would build the wall he proposed along the southern border of the United States and, without details, said he wants to “work something out” for the so-called Dreamers, the young undocumented immigrants who were offered temporary reprieve from deportation by an Obama executive action.
Trump displayed admiration for the Democratic president with whom he has spoken regularly since his election, saying they had a “good chemistry.” Trump said he has asked Obama for his opinion on appointments to the new administration.
“He really cares about the country, I have to say. I mean I differ with him in numerous things. But he really cares about the country,” the president-elect said.