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GQ Names Most Bush Powerful Man in Britain

January 5, 2005

LONDON (AP) _ The most powerful man in Britain is American President Bush, while soccer star David Beckham’s sway over British society is in free fall, a men’s magazine said Wednesday.

Bush tied with Prime Minister Tony Blair for first place in the list drawn up by the British edition of GQ magazine.

Blair has long faced criticism that he simply follows Bush’s orders as his ``poodle,″ but GQ claimed that re-election has given Bush an even bigger say in British life. Last year, the U.S. president didn’t make the top 100.

Beckham plummeted from eighth to 23rd place, reflecting a turbulent year for the England soccer captain in which ``the wheels seem to have come off Brand Beckham,″ GQ said.

His marriage to Victoria Beckham, a former Spice Girl, hit the headlines in April when a former personal aide, Rebecca Loos, claimed she and the soccer star had had a 10-day affair. He dismissed the claim as ``ludicrous″ and ``absurd.″

GQ said 19-year-old soccer sensation Wayne Rooney was the ``new Beckham,″ and put the Manchester United striker in 14th place.

The most powerful nonpolitician on the GQ list was media mogul Rupert Murdoch, ranked No. 5. His News International company publishes Britain’s biggest-selling daily newspaper The Sun, as well as The Times of London and The Sunday Times. Murdoch gave up his Australian citizenship in 1985 to become an American.

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