The political rivals were among several names under consideration, NBC News’ “Today” show reported Monday. Others include Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, American soccer star Megan Rapinoe, Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and the still-anonymous whistleblower who sparked the House impeachment inquiry of the president based on his dealings with Ukraine.
Reached for comment, a Time spokesperson told HuffPost that its selection is based on “who most influenced the news and the world ― for better or for worse ― during the past year.”
“The shortlist is selected by Time editors,” the representative added. “Time is unable to comment further on the 2019 Person of the Year choice until it is revealed on Wednesday morning.”
Tensions between Trump and Pelosi reached a fever pitch last week when the speaker called for articles of impeachment to be drafted, arguing that “the president’s actions have seriously violated the Constitution.”
“Our democracy is what’s at stake,” she said in a press conference. “The president leaves us no choice but to act because he is trying to corrupt, once again, the election for his own benefit.”
At the heart of the inquiry is Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during which Trump repeatedly pressed him to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son based on unsubstantiated corruption accusations.
On Twitter, Trump decried proceedings as an “attack,” claimed that Pelosi “had a nervous fit” during her announcement and suggested that she focus on homelessness in her home state rather than his ouster.
In November, Trump berated Pelosi’s San Francisco district as a “dangerous & disgusting Slum” just before former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, a star witness in impeachment hearings, began testifying to the House Intelligence Committee.
Pelosi famously squared off with Trump during the 35-day government shutdown, which she was credited with ending in January after refusing to cave to Trump’s demands for border wall funding. She even pushed him to reschedule his State of the Union address and appeared to mock him with her applause when he finally delivered his speech.