"A rarely-used fine could limit the spread of the coronavirus to the United States" by Nolan Rappaport


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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is responding to an outbreak of respiratory disease caused by a new type of coronavirus which was detected initially in Wuhan City, China. Wuhan has been locked down for more than a month.

The disease has been named, the “coronavirus disease 2019” (COVID-19), but its pathology is still being determined.

Widespread transmission of COVID-19 in the United States would translate into large numbers of people needing medical care at the same time. Health care providers and hospitals could be overwhelmed, and no medications have been approved yet for treating it.

Moreover, it is going to be very difficult to contain. Unlike the situation in 2003 with the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), people who are contagious with COVID-19 may not be noticeably sick. In fact, most cases have been mild.

On Jan. 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak a “public health emergency of international concern.” WHO advises all countries to prepare for containment, including active surveillance, early detection, isolation, and case management.

Keeping COVID-19 out of the United States

President Donald Trump’s son, Donald Trump, Jr., has been criticized for claiming in a tweet that, “The coronavirus outbreak shows how important it is for us to keep our borders secure.” For instance, one reaction was: “Walls don’t keep out viruses.”

Of course, that is true. Walls won’t keep COVID-19 out of the United States, but strong border security does make it harder for contagious people who have COVID-19 to making an illegal entry into the United States.

How effective are they? No one knows how effective any border security measure is. It is not possible to determine how many aliens have succeeded in making undetected, illegal entries between the more than 300 official land, air, and sea ports of entry. It is a certainty, however, that keeping as many people with COVID-19 out of the country as possible will save lives.

Read more at https://thehill.com/opinion/immigrat...navirus-to-the

Published originally on The Hill.

Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an executive branch immigration law expert for three years. He subsequently served as an immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for 20 years. Follow him on Twitter @NolanR1 or at https://nolanrappaport.blogspot.com.