Washington DC / The president of the United States signed an executive order on Wednesday, under the pretext of the COVID-19 pandemic, to suspend immigration into the country to protect American jobs.
“In order to protect our great American workers, I have just signed an executive order temporarily suspending immigration into the United States,” Donald Trump said at the daily press conference of the White House task force on COVID-19.
The order, which freezes the issuance of green cards and comes into effect at midnight Thursday, will have an initial duration of 60 days, at which time Trump can extend it if he deems it necessary.
“This will ensure that unemployed Americans of all backgrounds will be first in line for jobs as our economy reopens,” Trump said. “It will also preserve our health care resources for American patients.”
The order will apply to foreign nationals seeking a green card and who are outside the US at the time of the order.
The order contains some exceptions, such as that of those wanting to enter the US on an immigrant visa as a healthcare professional or researcher aiming to combat the spread of COVID-19, spouses and children of US citizens, members of the Armed Forces, those designated by law enforcement, and prospective foreign adoptees of US citizens.
Also exempt are those who apply for an investor visa, which requires the investment of at least $900,000 in a US business to obtain.
“It could be modified,” Trump said. “Right now, we have a very powerful immigration ban, but it may be modified, meaning made tougher or made less tough.”
On Monday, Trump tweeted that “in light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens,” he would be signing an executive order “to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!”
On Tuesday he said that the measure aims for Americans to benefit first from the economic recovery after the coronavirus crisis has destroyed 22 million jobs in the past four weeks. (April 22, 2020, EFE/PracticaEspañol)
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