President Donald Trump has announced he’ll sign an executive order temporarily suspending immigration into the United States in an effort to slow COVID-19. The administration is working out details on the suspension such as if it would include all countries and how it would potentially handle visitors with work and other visas.
“In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens,” Trump wrote in the tweet, “I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States.”
The President’s pledge follows the March closures of the Mexican and Canadian borders to all nonessential travel, although trade is still allowed.
In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 21, 2020
On March 11, the U.S. also barred the entry of all foreign nationals who had visited China, Iran or any of the following European countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
On March 16, the list included the United Kingdom and Ireland.
On March 19, the U.S. State Department issued a Level 4 advisory recommending against any global travel by U.S. citizens. The recommendation was not a requirement, however.
Trump, immigration officials and Administration staff will meet to work out details of the temporary ban as new numbers are released on the status of the spread of COVID-19.
Trump is credited with helping to slow the spread of COVID-19 when he was the first world leader to ban travel from China in January. At the time, Democrats and news media were critical of the move calling it racist. Democrat primary candidate Joe Biden recently reversed his earlier criticisms and says he now supports the President’s move.