With just a few quick strokes of the pen, President Donald Trump on Friday banned — temporarily, for now — roughly 218 million people from entering the United States.
Trump barred citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the US for at least the next 90 days by executive order, which a senior White House official said later Friday is likely just a first step toward establishing a broader ban.
It’s unclear how many more countries will be added to the list, but the official said the administration will be “very aggressive” as it weighs how many more countries to add to the list.
Asked what criteria the administration will consider as it looks to expand the ban beyond the initial seven countries, the official said simply the “mandate is to keep America safe.”
“Not going to take any risks,” the official added.
The executive order bars all people hailing from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen — or at least 218 million people, based on 2015 data published by the World Bank — from entering the United States. Those countries were named in a 2016 law concerning immigration visas as “countries of concern.”