Head of border patrol falsely claims Trump's wall helps fight coronavirus

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Evidence does not support the Trump administration's attempt to link the border wall and migrants with the coronavirus outbreak.

From the March 25 edition of Fox News' "Fox & Friends":

MARK MORGAN, acting commissioner, Customs and Border Protection: As far as the wall goes, again, once again, the president is right. We're well over 130 miles right now, and here's what's important: This is really a three-legged stool.

 

We talked about the drugs pouring into our country — everybody gets that. We talked about the bad people, the murderers, the pedophiles that border patrol's stopping from coming into this country. But another part of that stool, that three-legged stool, is also infectious diseases.

 

This is why borders matter. The wall helps that. People don't like to hear that, but that's the truth. Borders matter, and our ability to safeguard isn't just from drugs or bad people, but it's also from the spread of infectious diseases, and I hope that people are paying attention to that.

Along with Morgan, Donald Trump himself has suggested in the past that "tremendous infectious disease is pouring across the border," calling for a wall to prevent immigrants from bringing more sickness into the country.

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Experts say such claims are not rooted in fact.

"There is no evidence whatsoever that this is so," Arthur Caplan, director of medical ethics at New York University's Langone Medical Center, told PolitiFact in 2015.

"No study or survey shows this. There is no outbreak or bump in disease attributable to immigrants."Paul Spiegel, a medical doctor at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, told NBC News in 2018, that the concept of immigrants as disease carriers was mostly a racist trope.

"There is no evidence to show that migrants are spreading disease," he said. "That is a false argument that is used to keep migrants out."

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.