U.S. President Donald Trump claims that Time magazine informed him that he would probably be named Person of the Year for the second year running, and asked him to do an interview and photo shoot.

But Trump said he declined because “probably” wasn’t good enough.


Time denied Trump’s claims on Twitter, insisting the publication “does not comment” on their Person of the Year honouree prior to publishing the news.

And former Time  journalists have cast doubts on the president’s version of events.

The magazine’s former managing editor Richard Stengel tweeted the following response:

James Poniewozik, a journalist who wrote a column for Time for 15 years, said Trump was likely just setting up to be able to claim “I didn’t want it” when he isn’t picked.

Trump was named Person of the Year in 2016, after his shock win in the U.S. presidential election.

“For nearly 17 months on the campaign trail, Trump did what no American politician had attempted in a generation, with defiant flair,” Time wrote in 2016. “Instead of painting a bright vision for a unified future, he magnified the divisions of the present, inspiring new levels of anger and fear within his country.”

“Whatever you think of the man, this much is undeniable: he uncovered an opportunity others didn’t believe existed, the last, greatest deal for a 21st century salesman.”

READ MORE: President-elect Donald Trump is TIME magazine’s person of the year

He also features in this year’s shortlist of candidates, which includes the likes of Hillary Clinton, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Russian President Vladimir Putin, North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong-Un, disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein and NFL player and social activist Colin Kaepernick.

Readers can cast their votes online, although Time‘s editors make the final call. This year’s “Person of the Year” will be revealed on Dec. 6.

WATCH: Does Donald Trump have ‘devil horns’ on the cover of ‘Time’?

The last person to receive the recognition in consecutive years was also a Republican president — Richard Nixon in 1971 and 1972, back when the award was called Man of the Year or Woman of the Year.

The tradition began in 1927, with Charles Lindbergh named Man of the Year for becoming the first person to fly a plane solo across the Atlantic Ocean.

Recent winners prior to Trump in 2016 include German Chancellor Angela Merkel in 2015, healthcare workers fighting Ebola in 2014, Pope Francis in 2013 and President Barack Obama in 2012.

Olympic gold medal tennis player Andy Murray parodied Trump tweets.