“The Turkish prime minister was the most popular -- and the least popular -- in our annual online poll,” the magazine announced on Monday. According to the annual poll, Erdoğan received 122,928 votes nominating him as the most influential person of the year, with Barcelona soccer player Lionel Messi coming in a far second with only 75,000 votes.
The Turkish premier not only topped the People's Choice for Time's 2011 Person of the Year poll, but the list of least popular people as well. He came in first among the least popular with 180,564 votes.
“Though it's not all rosy for Erdoğan, a majority of voters indeed voted “No,” arguing he should not be Time's Person of the Year. More than 180,000 votes were cast in the negative for the lauded politician, and his margin of “No” votes was even greater than the positive ones: The 1 percent was the second least-favorite candidate with 34,489 votes, a paltry 20 percent of Erdoğan's negative clicks,” the magazine said on Monday.
Erdoğan was featured on the cover of Time magazine last month. “Erdoğan's Way” read the magazine's cover, showing a black-and-white photo of Erdoğan with his arms crossed in front of him. “Turkey's pro-Islamic leader has built his (secular, democratic, Western-friendly) nation into a regional powerhouse … but can his example save the Arab Spring,” read a spot on the cover of the magazine.
Time's feature on Erdoğan began with an introduction of the heroic welcome Erdoğan received in Cairo in September as part of a tour to Arab Spring nations. “Cairo greeted Recep Tayyip Erdoğan like a rock star, with thousands of his fans carrying posters of him, cheering and chanting slogans at the airport,” Time's report said.