Comments by Sanwar Ali:
It would surely be quite extraordinary, to prevent US citizens and Green Card holders entry to the US if they were carrying certain diseases such as coronavirus, tuberculosis or SARS. American Civil Liberties Union Immigrant Rights Project director Omar Jadwat has said that refusing entry to US citizens would be unconstitutional. Some medical experts have actually commented that travel bans do not work in situations where there is already a significant infection rate as in the US. Apparently there are more than five million people infected in the US. Can you actually trust the Trump administration when they say that the CBP Customs and Border Protection would only prevent entry to US citizens in the "the rarest of circumstances" as is claimed.
Our condolences also to Donald Trump whose younger brother Robert Trump died aged 71 last night. According to the New York Times Robert Trump had reportedly been hospitalised in the intensive care unit for several days recently. He took blood thinners and had recently experienced brain bleeds after a fall.
Gwenda Blair, a Trump family biographer, told the Associated Press about Robert Trump:
“When he worked in the Trump Organization he was known as the nice Trump.”
Amid the coronavirus, US President Donald Trump has shutdown borders, banned most US work visas until the end of 2020 and is now considering an immigration measure that would ban US citizens from coming home if they’ve been exposed to coronavirus. If implemented, the measure could be the most controversial immigration restriction imposed during COVID.
According to a senior US official, a draft regulation has been drawn up, which would give the government – specifically the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) – powers to deny entry of all citizens if there is ‘reason to believe that they have contracted coronavirus or other diseases.’
The ban would go well beyond any quarantine measures that have already applied to those arriving from certain countries.
US clamping down on immigration
From closing borders with Mexico and Canada indefinitely and imposing a ban on some arrivals from China to banning the issuance of work visas, Trump has come down hard to reduce arrivals into the US since the pandemic began.
Trump has been blasted for a series of incredibly harsh measures, including blocking people from claiming US asylum if immigration enforcement authorities consider them likely to have contracted the virus.
The pandemic has also been used as an ‘opportunity’ to deport around 2,000 migrant children who were unaccompanied when arriving in the US, many of whom had been forced to flee their home country because their lives were in danger.
Protests and legal action against Trump US visa policies
Most of Trump’s controversial policies have been met with protests and legal action. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit in June opposing border restrictions that came into effect in the spring.
Meanwhile, in July, a coalition of business groups sued the Trump administration for its US work visa ban, arguing that it would shut out workers essential to the recovery of the US economy.
17 states also sued the White House when Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that international students taking online courses would be kicked out or barred from re-entering the US. This measure has since been scrapped.
Legal action expected if attempts made to restrict entry of US citizens
Should Trump ban US citizens, there’s likely to be uproar and a flurry of legal challenges. ACLU’s Omar Jadwat told the New York Times that such action would be ‘unconstitutional’ and would ‘represent another grave error made by the Trump administration in a year that has already seen far too many blunders.’
Trump behind in polls ahead of November Presidential elections
With Trump already behind in the polls ahead of the next US presidential election in November, banning US citizens from returning to America could be hugely damaging to the President’s re-election.
Coronavirus cases in the US have now exceeded five million, while more than 163,000 people have died as a result of the disease.
Medical officials told the Washington Post that increasing border restrictions will do ‘very little’ to ease the spread of COVID-19, saying ‘many regions are already seeing widespread community transmission.’
It’s not known whether Trump has the power to ban Americans or legal residents from the US. The draft order says that any regulation “must include appropriate protections to ensure that no constitutional rights are infringed.”
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