Trump Administration Weighing Possible Ban On Re-Entry For Permanent Residents And U.S. Citizens Who Show Coronavirus Symptoms

( President Donald Trump is apparently considering blocking both legal permanent residents and U.S. citizens from temporarily re-entering the country if authorities believe they may be infected with coronavirus.

The New York Times has obtained a draft of the immigration rule. It says American citizens as well as permanent residents could be stopped when trying to re-enter the country from abroad if an official “reasonably believes that the individual either may have been exposed to or is infected with the communicable disease.”

While the proposal didn’t outline how long the individuals may be barred from re-entering the United States, it did say it would be “limited in duration” and also “include appropriate protections to ensure that no Constitutional rights are infringed.”

The Trump administration has requested that certain federal agencies provide their feedback on the proposal by the end of the day Tuesday. The rule would be limited to a case-by-case basis, “only in the rarest of circumstances” and “when required in the interest of public health.”

The proposal would apply to all entry points into America, including at all airports and its border with Mexico and Canada.

The proposal is likely to rely on authorities that are given to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a source told CNN. The source within the administration also said:

“Career professionals at the CDC are working on an overall approach to pandemic control both now and in the future. The regulation is in draft form and subject (to) change. This is an ongoing process and any reporting on this would be extremely premature.”

The U.S. has implemented travel restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic, but none that have included legal residents and U.S. citizens. Since March, America has entered agreements with both Mexico and Canada to restrict non-essential travel between the borders.

The Trump administration also barred travelers from Europe from entering the U.S. at one point in the spring.

This proposal would take it to the next level, though, restricting the movements of legal permanent residents and even U.S. citizens. Even if the Trump administration moves forward with an order, it is likely to face immediate legal challenges.

The American Civil Liberties Union has already called the proposal “unconstitutional.” In a statement, the director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, Omar Jadwat, said:

“The Trump administration has rolled out one border ban after another — most recently on children and asylum seekers — using COVID-19 as an excuse, while failing abysmally to get the virus under control in the United States. The rumored order would be another grave error in a year that has already seen far too many.”

Critics have continued to point to the fact that the U.S. has way more cases than other countries that it is seeking to restrict.

As of Tuesday morning, data from Johns Hopkins University shows the U.S. has almost 5.1 million confirmed cases, with 163,533 deaths. The next closest is Brazil with 3.06 million cases and 101,752 deaths.

Mexico is sixth on the list with 485,836 cases and 53,003 deaths.