Michael Jackson Vs. Taylor Swift: The Pity Vote Commences

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Michael Jackson and Taylor Swift scored the most nods when the American Music Awards nominations were announced today. Jackson picked up five nominations including artist of the year, favorite male artist, favorite album in both pop/rock and soul/R&B categories for his hits package Number Ones. Swift, who is also up for artist of the year, was nominated in five additional categories.

ABC will broadcast the event on November 22. It’s the third year where winners are determined by online voting, a move which helped boost ratings last year.

So, who do you think America will pity the most? Michael Jackson seems like the easy vote here, since the man was probably done in by his doctor. Before his name became synonymous with social weirdness and sexual scandal, he was just as an emblematic of American culture as Coca-Cola — who just so happen to be an AMA sponsor. You would think this would be a no brainer, but hold on.

Taylor Swift was recently upstaged at the MTV Music Video Awards by a visibly drunk Kanye West. Even with Beyonce’s beautiful effort to assuage the ego of the young country crooner, the damage was done. Not only was Kanye vilified around the country, but people who didn’t even know who Taylor Swift was before suddenly took note. The harpies on The View seemed downright maternal.

But even with the publicity surrounding the VMA incident and her talent as a singer and songwriter, we think Michael Jackson has the award for Artist of the Year in the bag. In yet another deification of the King of Pop, voters will pay tribute to him one last time, choosing to focus on the star rather than the man. Or the music, for that matter.

Find the full list of nominees below:

ARTIST OF THE YEAR Kings of Leon Taylor Swift Lady Gaga Eminem Michael Jackson

POP/ROCK – Favorite Male Artist Eminem Michael Jackson T.I.

POP/ROCK – Favorite Female Artist Beyonce Lady Gaga Taylor Swift

POP/ROCK – Favorite Band, Duo or Group The Black Eyed Peas Kings of Leon Nickelback

POP/ROCK – Favorite Album Fame – Lady Gaga Number Ones – Michael Jackson Fearless – Taylor Swift

COUNTRY – Favorite Male Artist Jason Aldean Darius Rucker Keith Urban

COUNTRY – Favorite Female Artist Reba McEntire Taylor Swift Carrie Underwood

COUNTRY – Favorite Band, Duo or Group Rascal Flatts Sugarland Zac Brown Band

COUNTRY – Favorite Album Unstoppable – Rascal Flatts Fearless – Taylor Swift Foundation – Zac Brown Band

RAP/HIP-HOP – Favorite Male Artist Eminem Jay-Z T.I.

RAP/HIP-HOP – Favorite Album Relapse – Eminem Blueprint 3 – Jay-Z Paper Trail – T.I.

SOUL/R&B – Favorite Male Artist Jamie Foxx Michael Jackson Maxwell

SOUL/R&B – Favorite Female Artist Beyonce Keyshia Cole Keri Hilson

SOUL/R&B – Favorite Band, Duo or Group The Black Eyed Peas Day26 Mary Mary

SOUL/R&B – Favorite Album I Am…Sasha Fierce – Beyonce The E.N.D. – The Black Eyed Peas Number Ones – Michael Jackson

SOUNDTRACKS – Favorite Album Hannah Montana: The Movie Hannah Montana 3 Twilight Soundtrack

ALTERNATIVE ROCK – Favorite Artist Green Day Kings of Leon Shinedown

ADULT CONTEMPORARY – Favorite Artist Daughtry Jason Mraz Taylor Swift

LATIN – Favorite Artist Aventura Luis Fonsi Wisin Y Yandel

CONTEMPORARY INSPIRATIONAL – Favorite Artist Jeremy Camp Brandon Heath Mary Mary