On Thursday, Time revealed the cover, which followed others featuring South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Vice President Joe Biden, and a long list of other Democratic candidates.
The magazine appeared to be focusing on Warren's policy proposals — which conservatives have derided as socialist, too expensive and unrealistic — as "big ideas."
"Elizabeth Warren is bettng that Americans are ready for her big ideas," the cover read. It also highlighted Warren's oft-repeated line "I have a plan for that."
Noting the senator's series of "complex policy proposals," Time editor Haley Sweetland Edwards portrayed Warren as the catalyst behind a "populist political revolution."
"This flurry of white papers, often rendered in fine detail, appears to suggest a technocratic approach to governing," Edwards wrote in the magazine's cover story. "But in fact, her vision, taken as a whole, is closer to a populist political revolution."
Amid other concerns about bias, Time received criticism for its cover featuring Pete Buttigieg and his partner, Chasten, at the beginning of May. Left-leaning outlets PinkNews and Towleroad praised the cover, which featured the big-print type "First Family."
"The unlikely, untested and unprecedented campaign of Mayor Pete Buttigieg," it read. Buttigieg has become controversial for his claim to be a "devout Christian," as Time described him, while maintaining a same-sex partnership — something many Christians have deemed contradictory.
Buttigieg's cover story started with a description of an anti-abortion activist wearing a devil costume, taunting the Indiana mayor and remarking that Buttigieg was "such a threat" because he was a "homosexual" people could be proud of.
After citing pastor Franklin Graham's derisive response to Buttigieg and Jacob Wohl's sexual assault allegations, correspondent Charlotte Alter wrote, "But to some Americans, Buttigieg may just be the man to vanquish America’s demons."
Time featured Biden on its cover before he announced his 2020 bid, but also while he led other Democrats in the polls. The crowded Democratic field also made an appearance on Time's cover in February when the magazine detailed how the "biggest field yet" was intent on challenging Trump in 2020. That cover showed Democrats peering into the Oval Office as Trump sat at his desk.
By contrast, many Time covers of Trump have led to cries of negativity. For instance, earlier this year one cover featured a cartoon Trump slinging Twitter birds at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. as she catapulted subpoenas at him.
Another, more ambiguous cover, from April, showed Trump smiling while weathering an ominous storm looming over the Capitol. The image appeared after Special Counsel Robert Mueller released his report on the Russia investigation, which stopped short of recommending prosecution for obstruction of justice.
"America has now seen Trump weather a massive investigation led by a widely respected prosecutor," Time's Brian Bennett wrote.
Bennett declared the report — which didn't establish that Trump's campaign colluded with Russia, either — one of Trump's "biggest victories" but said Mueller's verdict wasn't "nearly as definitive as the president and his allies would claim." He also wrote that the report didn't "clear Trump of obstruction" and that his "presidency remains extraordinarily scandal-scarred."
Some other covers have shown Trump's face melting; his hair on fire after his first year in office; Trump as a series of wrecking balls; his face composited with that of Russian President Vladimir Putin; and Trump seeing a reflection of himself as a king.
As the conservative IJR Red noted, those seemed to differ from covers of former President Barack Obama.
One of Time's more controversial covers of the president happened as the administration struggled to deal with criticism over family separations at the southern border. The cover, introduced as a reflection on "Trump's border separation policy," included a much-circulated photo of a crying migrant girl who had, in fact, not been separated from her parents.
Time's editor in chief stood by the cover, saying "our cover and our reporting capture the stakes of this moment.”