In a primetime address to millions of Americans, President Trump misrepresented the travel restrictions he is imposing on travel between the United States and Europe.
Trump said "we will be suspending all travel from Europe to the United States for the next 30 days" before adding that there will be "exemptions for Americans who have undergone appropriate screenings."
Those exemptions are far more extensive than the President made them out to be. They apply to all US legal permanent residents, citizens and some of their family members, according to a statement from the Department of Homeland Security.
The travel restrictions Trump is enacting are in fact far more similar to those enacted on China.
The ban also does not apply to all of Europe but to nations in the Schengen zone. That includes Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
What this means: Americans and US permanent residents who are in Europe will still be allowed to fly to Europe and be allowed back into the United States during this 30-day period.
They will simply be screened upon entry to the United States and face quarantine or restrictions on their movement in the US for 14 days.
However, it is not clear whether airlines will still fly the routes if passenger demand from European nationals dries up because of the ban.
Trump also appeared to correct himself on a ban on cargo. In his speech he said, "There will be exemptions for Americans who have undergone appropriate screenings and these prohibitions will not only apply to the tremendous amount of trade and cargo, but various other things as we get approval. "
A few minutes ago, the President tweeted, "...please remember, very important for all countries & businesses to know that trade will in no way be affected by the 30-day restriction on travel from Europe. The restriction stops people not goods."
This is not to say the President is not taking an extremely severe step, but it is not the all-encompassing suspension on travel between the United States and Europe that the President portrayed.