With eleven days left to go before TIME’s 2015 Person of the Year poll come to a close, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the upstart candidate for president, holds a wide lead over global notables among TIME readers even as he trails Hillary Clinton in voter polls and fights a long-shot battle for the Democratic nomination.
The self-described democratic socialist currently leads Malala Yousafzai, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning activist, with 11% in the TIME reader poll compared with her 5%. Sanders also leads Pope Francis and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Barack Obama, and is far ahead of entertainers like Adele (2%) and Jennifer Lawrence (1.7%). In voter polls against Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, Sanders is consistently losing by about 20 percentage points in national polls. In the Person of the Year poll, Hillary Clinton has earned 1.3 % of the vote, trailing the likes of Vladimir Putin and Francois Hollande as well as Nicki Minaj and Amy Schumer.
Sanders is also beating Donald Trump in the reader poll. Trump told supporters at a rally in Birmingham, Alabama, Saturday that he believed the magazine was considering him for the annual recognition.
Sanders, who was little-known when he began his unlikely bid for president in April, has become a hero on the Democratic left among progressives disillusioned by growing income inequality and money in politics. With a little over two months until the Iowa caucuses, Sanders faces tough odds to win the Democratic nomination. But he has cast a long shadow over the Democratic primary with his ability to introduce a progressive wish-list including breaking up the big banks, instituting public financing of elections, socialistic single-payer healthcare system and tuition free college at public institutions.
Voting on the reader’s choice poll ends Dec. 4 at 11:59 p.m., and the winner will be announced Dec. 7. While American political figures from John F. Kennedy to Jimmy Carter to Ronald Reagan have been recognized as Man of Year after winning the White House (the issue changed to Person of the Year in 1999), no presidential candidate has been named Person of the Year prior to the end of the campaign.
TIME’s editors will choose the Person of the Year, the person TIME believes most influenced the news this year for better or worse, but that doesn’t mean readers shouldn’t have their say. Cast your vote here.
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