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How Trump is using the pandemic to crack down on immigration

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Many measures were initially billed as temporary but have been extended repeatedly as coronavirus continues to spread. And it's likely there's more to come as the 2020 election looms.

President Trump at a ceremony marking the 200th mile of US-Mexico border wall in San Luis, Arizona, on June 23, 2020.
President Trump at a ceremony marking the 200th mile of US-Mexico border wall in San Luis, Arizona, on June 23, 2020.

President Trump at a ceremony marking the 200th mile of US-Mexico border wall in San Luis, Arizona, on June 23, 2020.

The latest changes came last week, when the Department of Homeland Security unveiled a new proposal to bar asylum-seekers on public health grounds and Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced new rules for international students.
In the face of widespread criticism and numerous lawsuits, officials Tuesday rescinded the controversial foreign student visa policy just eight days after announcing it. The measure would have barred international students who take only online courses from staying in the United States.
Critics accuse the administration of using the pandemic as a pretext to enact unnecessary immigration restrictions and advance particularly harsh policies that had struggled to gain momentum prior to the public health crisis. Trump maintains he's making good on his core campaign promise to put America first.

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