Varadkar joins Kim Jong Un, Millie Bobby Brown, Trump and Meghan Markle on the Time 100 list of the world’s most influential people of 2018

The Taoiseach made the top 100 which includes major world figures from music, to sports to politics and society.

Time says its list is not merely a measure of power but is “a designation of individuals whose time, in our estimation, is now”.

‘Sunday Independent’ political correspondent Philip Ryan wrote the short extract which explains to  readers why Mr Varadkar has made the cut.

Check it out below

 

When Ireland finally decriminalized homosexuality in 1993, the Catholic Church still had a firm grip on the state’s affairs. Divorce was illegal, and its abortion laws were deeply entrenched as some of the most conservative in the West. Twenty-five years on, Ireland is a very different place—symbolized by the rise of its new leader, Leo Varadkar. The openly gay son of an Indian immigrant, Varadkar decided to come out publicly in the run-up to the world’s first marriage-equality referendum. Today the once anti-abortion politician is campaigning to significantly liberalize the country’s abortion laws.

Varadkar is now at the center of E.U. negotiations on Brexit, which could have a devastating impact on Ireland’s peace and prosperity. He also faces a major housing and homelessness crisis. The country’s youngest-ever Taoiseach will be judged on how he guides his nation through these challenges.

Ryan is the political correspondent for the Sunday Independent and co-author of Leo: A Very Modern Taoiseach