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29 Mar, 2020 00:32

'Not necessary': Trump says he will not impose quarantine on New York, New Jersey & Connecticut

'Not necessary': Trump says he will not impose quarantine on New York, New Jersey & Connecticut

US President Donald Trump has apparently abandoned the idea of imposing a federal quarantine on the three US states hardest-hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, including New York, saying a “strong” travel warning will be issued instead.

In an apparent about-turn, which came mere hours after he floated the idea of placing the coronavirus “hotspots” of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut under federally mandated quarantine, Trump took to Twitter, stating that such a robust measure would “not be necessary.”

Trump appears to have changed his mind after discussing the issue with the states’ authorities, tweeting that he made the decision upon the "recommendation" of the VP Mike Pence-led coronavirus task force and after “consultation” with the governors of the affected states.

Rather than pushing for a quarantine, Trump said that he had instructed the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue “a strong travel advisory,” to be published later on Saturday.

Trump’s initial proposal to put New York, which accounts for roughly a third of the US coronavirus death toll with at least 728 deaths out of more than 52,000 confirmed cases, had drawn ire from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. The Democrat governor pulled no punches shredding the idea, arguing that such an order would be “illegal” and would lead to “chaos and mayhem.”

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Speaking to CNN, Cuomo said that Trump would open a can of worms if he goes ahead with the quarantine, likening it to “a federal declaration of war on states.”

Cuomo, a vocal critic of Trump, has unleashed criticism but also praise on the Trump administration, stunning many in the anti-Trump #Resistance camp, eager to weaponize the coronavirus emergency to score political points, when he said last week that Trump was “100 percent sincere” in his effort to stop the outbreak and that his administration was “ready and willing to help.”

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