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NEW YORK (Reuters) - President Bush's bold, uncompromising leadership and his clear-cut election victory made him Time magazine's "Person of the Year" for 2004, its managing editor said on Sunday.

Time chose Bush "for sticking to his guns (literally and figuratively), for reshaping the rules of politics to fit his 10-gallon-hat leadership style and for persuading a majority of voters this time around that he deserved to be in the White House for another four years," Jim Kelly wrote in the magazine.

Bush was also Time's choice to appear on the cover in 2000 after winning the presidential election despite losing the popular vote.

His father, President George H. W. Bush, was named "Man of the Year" in 1990 for what Time called his mastery of foreign policy and his wavering domestic record.

Last year the magazine picked "The American Soldier."

"Obviously many supporters of the president will be pleased, many people who do not support the president will probably sigh," Kelly said.

"But even those who may not have voted for him will acknowledge that this is one of the more influential presidents of the last 50 years."

Kelly said he and his staff debated giving the award to others including Karl Rove, the president's influential political adviser, and filmmakers Michael Moore and Mel Gibson.

The winner must be "the person or persons who most affected the news and our lives, for good or for ill, and embodied what was important about the year, for better or for worse," he said.

U.S. aviator Charles Lindbergh was Time's first "Man of the Year" in 1927. Some selections have been notoriously unpopular, such as Adolf Hitler in 1938, Joseph Stalin in 1939 and 1942, and Iran's Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in 1979.

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