When it comes to immigration into the United States, President Donald Trump is looking to suspend it temporarily amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Making the announcement late Monday, the president wrote on Twitter that he will be signing an executive order to temporarily suspend immigration into the country.
“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!”
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
Trump’s remarks drew mixed reactions.
Among those applauding the president include Rep. Paul Gosar, who tweeted, “Thank you, [Donald Trump]! All immigration to the United States should halt until every American who wants a job has one!”
Check out the comments below:
22 million Americans have lost their jobs in the last month because of the China virus. Let’s help them get back to work before we import more foreigners to compete for their jobs. https://t.co/0a03nncxeC— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) April 21, 2020
However, his announcement also drew criticism. Among those who reacted include Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), who called it an “authoritarian-like move” and accused the president of “[taking] advantage of a crisis and [advancing] his anti-immigrant agenda.”
Check out some of the reactions below:
This action is not only an attempt to divert attention away from Trump’s failure to stop the spread of the coronavirus and save lives, but an authoritarian-like move to take advantage of a crisis and advance his anti-immigrant agenda. We must come together to reject his division. https://t.co/wYEai4rYVY— Joaquin Castro (@JoaquinCastrotx) April 21, 2020
Trump failed to take this crisis seriously from day 1. His abandonment of his role as president has cost lives. And now, he's shamelessly politicizing this pandemic to double down on his anti-immigrant agenda.— Kamala Harris (@SenKamalaHarris) April 21, 2020
Enough, Mr. President. The American people are fed up. https://t.co/pT5edXBIT5
We need to come together to beat this disease, not attack each other and divide the country. This is a disgrace — demonizing so many of those who are serving on the front lines against COVID while the President shows himself as small and ineffective.— (((Rep. Nadler))) (@RepJerryNadler) April 21, 2020
It is not clear when the executive order would take effect. However, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is still in the process of drafting an executive order. Additionally, an exemption to temporary guest workers is in the talks, according to Politico.
As Politico reports, the president also did not make it clear about the extent of the action he would take on this. On what pushed the president to make this decision, a DHS official said, “22 million unemployed Americans and counting due to COVID-19.”
On Monday, DHS Acting Secretary Chad Wolf wrote in a statement on the border restrictions being extended for an additional 30 days to non-essential travel:
“In close collaboration, the US, Mexico, and Canada have each agreed to extend restrictions on non-essential travel across their shared borders for 30 additional days. As President Trump stated last week, border control, travel restrictions and other limitations remain critical to slowing the spread and allowing the phased opening of the country.”
This comes at a time that there are over 787,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S., more than 37,000 confirmed cases in Canada, and over 8,7000 confrimed cases in Mexico, as of Tuesday morning.