Happy Thursday. In the span of about 15 minutes last night, President Trump instituted a ban on travel from Europe, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced they both tested positive for COVID-19, and the NBA suspended its season “until further notice.” But other than that, pretty typical Wednesday.
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In a primetime address to the nation, President Trump announced a 30-day ban on travel from Europe (excluding legal permanent residents of the United States and members of their immediate family), starting Friday at 11:59 p.m., to combat the spread of the coronavirus. The United Kingdom was exempted from this ban.
Trump also outlined a series of economic measures his administration is pursuing to ease the financial burden of COVID-19, including delaying the April 15 tax deadline for those affected by the virus, offering low-interest loans to small businesses facing a cash crunch, and reducing the payroll tax. (The latter two proposals would require congressional sign-off).
The World Health Organization officially declared the COVID-19 outbreak a global pandemic.