President Donald Trump declared a federal state of emergency as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread throughout the US. The move frees up additional funding that will allow the government to address the effects of the pandemic.

President Donald Trump could sign an executive order temporarily banning the issue of new green cards and work visas in the next few days, The New York Times reports.

Late Monday, Trump made a shock announcement that he intended to close the United States to people trying to legally immigrate into America to live and work, effectively sealing off the nation from the rest of the world.

The Times reports that the order will likely come this week and will contain some exemptions in industries that are considered to be critical.

The newspaper also said the Department of Homeland Security was mulling a separate move to expand travel restrictions that already prohibit travelers from Europe and China, which would further shrink the number of people able to come to the US even for short visits.

Trump’s motivation is reportedly so he can be seen to be protecting American workers from foreign competition when the economy reopens after the worst of the coronavirus pandemic, particularly as he faces a tough re-election fight.

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