TIME magazine has released its shortlist for 2012′s Person of the Year and it looks like President Barack Obama has a chance to reclaim his 2008 title.

The annual issue, usually published in December or January, features a person, group or idea editors believe have “most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill, and embodied what was important about the year.”

President Obama, who made the cover in 2008 as the nation’s first African-American president, is among the 38 nominees for the spot.

“The year 2012 was a challenging one for President Obama,” TIME‘s Adam Sorensen wrote, listing the economy, the attack in Benghazi and a deadlocked Congress as some of his many obstacles.

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“And while many democrats admitted that he had disappointed in reaching their high expectations from 2012, they turned out for the election in robust numbers all the same,” Sorensen pointed out. “The oceans didn’t recede and the planet didn’t heal, but America was satisfied enough to reward him with four more years in office.”

President Obama’s chances of being chosen are solid if past covers are any indication. Former presidents George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan were both featured on the cover after their first and second term elections.

But the president is not without his competition. Also up for the title are Olympic sweetheart Gabby Douglas and hip-hop mogul Jay-Z.

The 16-year-old, two-gold-medal-winning athlete accomplished a number of firsts at the London Olympic Games this summer, including becoming the first U.S. gymnast to win both the all-around and team gold medals in the same year, and the first African-America gymnast to win the Olympic all-around title.

“She was able to become an Olympic champion who captivated her home country despite, she says, being the victim of bullying early in her career,” TIME noted.

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