President Trump Tweets about Temporarily Halting Immigration into The U.S.
Late on April 20, President Trump tweeted that he would temporarily halt immigration to the U.S. through an Executive Order. This tweet has generated a flurry of concerns from employers of foreign workers, higher education institutions, and immigrants both inside and outside the United States.
Details of the president's plan, including who it would apply to, how long it would last, and when it would go into effect, are still unclear. It is also unclear if the suspension would only apply to foreigners outside the U.S. who have already been blocked from entering the country for the last few weeks because of the State Department’s decision to suspend all visa issuance over COVID-19 concerns, or if it would also be designed to affect foreigners who are presently in the U.S.
Higher education institutions stand to be particularly impacted by any decision to temporarily suspend immigration to the U.S., since many international students enter the United States for the fall semester in August and September.
Certain media outlets, including the Hill, report that the suggested executive order remains under review and is likely to contain exemptions for healthcare workers and migrant farm workers, along with certain other essential workers. Some media is also reporting that the suspension will be for 120 days. However, while these details remain unconfirmed, it is fairly certain that an executive order like this is likely to draw legal challenges.