December 20th, 2007
09:00 AM ET
15 years ago

Romney: Man of Year choice 'disgusting'

Romney is not happy with Time Magazine's choice.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Count Republican Mitt Romney among those who aren't happy with Time Magazine's choice of Russian President Vladimir Putin for Person of the Year.

In an interview with CNN's Glenn Beck, the presidential candidate called the choice "disgusting."

"You know, he imprisoned his political opponents. There have been a number of highly suspicious murders," Romney said on Beck's radio show. "He has squelched public dissent and free press. And to suggest that someone like that is the Man of the Year is really disgusting. I'm just appalled."

"Clearly General Petraeus is the person, or one of a few people, who would certainly merit that designation," the former Massachusetts governor added.

Rival presidential candidate John McCain also said Wednesday he disagreed with the choice.

“I noticed that Time Magazine made President Putin the Time Magazine ‘Man of the Year,’” McCain said, according to NBC. “I understand that probably, but my man of the year is one Gen. David Petraeus, our general who has brought success in Iraq.”

Time Magazine: A Tsar Is Born

Watch: Why Time chose Putin

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: John McCain • Mitt Romney
soundoff (361 Responses)
  1. Michael, Houston, TX

    While I agree with Mitt, the choice of Putin indicates his influence and is not related in any way to his "goodness". Unless, of course, Time Magazine has changed its criteria. If I'm not mistaken, Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin were also named Man of the Year. Putin is cut from the same cloth as any ordinary totalitarian dictator. The fact that he has returned totalitarianism to Russia without any cry from the west (liberal or conservative) is the travesty.

    December 19, 2007 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  2. Iridius Izzarne, Seattle WA

    Mitt Romney, I find you disgusting. You're a hypocrite. You make it seem like you're above the board, but you condemn gay marriage. How does that make you any different than what you accuse Putin of doing? Sure, it's a different level of suppression, but suppression just the same.

    “I don't want civil unions or gay marriage.”
    – Mitt Romney

    December 19, 2007 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  3. David, San Gabriel CA

    The Man of the Year award from Time Magazine has always gone to the person that most influenced the news that year. You don't think Time really thinks Adolph Hitler, a former Time Man of the Year, is a swell guy, do you?

    December 19, 2007 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  4. Nancy, State College, PA

    Do we really want a president who calls the choice of Putin as Time Magazine's Person of the Year "disgusting"? Should Romney be elected, what will he say at his first meeting with Putin?

    December 19, 2007 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  5. Raman, Plano TX

    Pardon me, TIME magazine cannot be faulted.

    Correct me if I am wrong – Was Russia included in axis of evil?

    December 19, 2007 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  6. Brian Fitzgerald, Fairmont, MN

    didn't George "Dub-Ya" Bush get nominated for man of the year a few years back (in 2004 and 2000). Tell me what did Bush do to deserve that nomination? He has done nothing besides start a ludicrous war that has only caused our country to be hated more and more by other nations around the world and has also caused our country to go further and further into debt.

    December 19, 2007 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  7. Kelly, Orem, Utah

    I respect Mr. Romney for stating so boldly an opinion on principals. When such strong feelings about a subject not directed to his campaign are stated, it shows me the strength in his candor as well as his campaigning. I really thing Romney is the real deal through and through.

    December 19, 2007 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  8. Michele, Troy, MI

    I have to agree with Mitt. General Petraeus would have been the perfect choice.

    December 19, 2007 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  9. Gayle Anderson, Los Angeles, CA

    Hello. Doesn't anybody get the "person of the year" specs? It's not a Boy Scout award. It's about being a newsmaker.

    December 19, 2007 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  10. Brian Tampa, FL

    Tom, you are the one who is ignorant. To compare Bush and Putin shows an extreme lack of understanding about the world around you. You liberals have been bashing Bush so long you have lost all prospective. You say Putin has the respect of his people yet all outside groups have branded this past election a farce. You say he has respect of leaders, I challenge that assumption, what leaders? Most in Europe decry his move towards the old Soviet state. Drag yourself away from the Bush bashing blogs and try picking up some intelligent perspective.

    December 19, 2007 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  11. Jose

    Wow, it is just Russia that murders people? And the US doesn't? Come on people, even a blind man can see that one!

    December 19, 2007 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  12. Valoree Mills, Felton, CA

    I agree with Mr Romney. Why in the world would time magazine vote for President Putin to be man of the year. What were they thinking. With all the possible positive people they could have chosen they choose this crook who sold nucurlar fuel to Iran.. Duhhh...
    BAD FORM..
    Valoree Mills
    Felton, CA

    December 19, 2007 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  13. Dungarees, Washington DC

    Matt's point (above) is correct that there are people who garnered more attention and did some good things, just as Britney Spears set an example of American youth. I personally don't think Mr. Putin was the beset choice, but I also don't think that, because he's our general, that General Petraeus, who is oversaw less than overt success in his training mission and is now overseeing some military succes with increased troop strengh, as the best choice either; by Senator McCain's definition of success, I'd think he would propose the President for Man of the Year because the President authorized the additional troops – a significant amount of troops in opposition to many suggestions; that's a greater impact than General Petraeus. In any event, Time Magazine made it's selection based on it's criteria, not on the criteria of two politicians running for office, campaigning with soundbytes. Better the two politicians tell me what they'd do as president, if elected, than what Time Magazine's selection process SHOULD be.

    December 19, 2007 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  14. chris, bronx, ny

    wow... in midst of a presidential race this is the topic that is brought up!!! instead of worrying about iraq and those soldiers risking their lives everyday for a pointless matter,they are worrying about man of the year! sorry world it couldn't be george bush he took more then the required 5 mins to think and say something. our "supposed"leaders should be worried about giving americans,not the rest of the world!!, healthcare,free money for school ,so american children have something to look forward in life,bringing down inflated oil prices,job security, and most importantly our judicial system which is as bad as some 3rd world countries.. goverment spends more money incarcerating people then they give to someone who wants to go to school.. these should be topics for presidential races not, man of the year,not kosovo, its should be america and its people first and foremost then let our "so-called" goverment worry abt the rest of the world

    December 19, 2007 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  15. EB Rideout, Georgia.

    This empty-suited buffoon forgets that if he is elected he will have to deal with Putin at some point. Nothing like burning bridges if front of yourself, eh Mitt?

    Keep talkin', Mitt – you're sounding more and more like Bush every day.

    December 19, 2007 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  16. Gatsby, Newark, DE

    One thing, the Time's Man of the Year Choice is someone who has made the most change in the world; it is not always necessarily someone with good intentions. Putin is not necessarily a good man (there is a reason why he draws comparisons to tyrants like Stalin and such), but he is a smart man and is the reason behind Russia's return to power and stability.

    Also, if Romney wants to be president, he might not to insult foreign leaders before he even becomes president. Although Putin won't be directly in charge of Russia this time next year (he's leaving his role of President to become the weaker Prime Minister), he'll more than likely still be pulling the strings of Russia, politically speaking.

    Personally though, I believe that the award of Man of the Year would have been better suited for JK Rowling or Al Gore whom I believe were runners-up. However, Times Magazine names people Man of the Year for a reason.

    December 19, 2007 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  17. Patrick, Denver Colorado

    How exactly has George W. Bush limited the press and people who disagree with him? You may not agree with him on some issues but to say he's limited free speech, the press just a lie. PLEASE tell me how he's done this with specific examples. I didn't even vote for Bush but the outrageous things people will say about someone b/c they disagree with them on their policies is amazing. Where would you rather live; Bush haters, Russia or the United States?

    December 19, 2007 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  18. Laura Tulsa OK

    A lot of commenters acknowledge Time magazine would put a bad person on the cover if that person is the most influential. But why doesn't Time magazine just ignore a bad person? If we all agree they're a bad person, why put a bad person on the cover?

    December 19, 2007 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  19. JC , Ohio

    "...but my man of the year is one Gen. David Petraeus, our general who has brought success in Iraq.”

    THAT is why McBrainless won't win. He is as delusional (or purposely deceitful) as Bush.

    December 19, 2007 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  20. Lee, Mays Landing, New Jersey

    Mitt's pandering to ignorance is just getting plain hilarious.
    If he wasn't running for prez and trying to impress some primitive yahoos. he wouldn't care and would know that the man of the year is not a popularity contest and has nothing to do with how positive the person is, but just has to be a person impacting the world.

    Mitt is a disgusting and silly panderer and I suspect he knows it and doesn't care because the man has no shame.

    December 19, 2007 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  21. Bill Culver

    I wouldn't expect anyone different than that choice from Time. That type regime is what they hope for and look foreward to for this country.They are socialists leaning trash.

    December 19, 2007 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  22. JB SHELL


    December 19, 2007 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  23. Chris, Wakefield RI

    Denoucing Putin and suggesting general Petraeus suggests a very naive few of the world at large beyond America or countries America currently occupies. True Petraeus has a hard job, but only because the war was so badly bungled in the first place our similarly naive and heavy handed leaders.

    December 19, 2007 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  24. Pierre, NY, NY

    Governor Romney should read what the Man of the Year honor is. It is not the best person for that year after all Time gave it to Hitler and Stalin. It is rather the person that most affected the world that year. Putin is very arguably that person, making Russia a global power again after the Yelsin years. Mitt might be referring to recent years, like in 2001 when the person that really affected the news was clearly Osama bin Laden. Terrible person, but the biggest news maker as well.

    December 19, 2007 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  25. Jen, Cedar Falls, IA

    I totally agree with Romney and McCain, they know what they're talking about, too. The haters on here who live each day to bash Bush & the Republicans as much as possible clearly have a narrow view of the 'big picture' of the world. What Putin has done recently is scary when looking at what can happen in Russia's future. I doubt most of these Bush hating bloggers have any idea what Putin's done in the last few months, they're too busy singing the old Bush-hate tune. It's an old old song, get a new one, or better yet, get a LIFE (or an education)!

    December 19, 2007 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15