WASHINGTON -- Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) announced on Monday that he plans to introduce legislation that would temporarily ban U.S. visas for nationals from African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak.
Rubio said in a statement that he plans to offer the legislation when the Senate returns to work in November. The temporary ban would apply to nationals from Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, and would extend to other countries where the virus has spread. The ban would remain in place until the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention determines that the outbreak has been contained.
“We must take any and all necessary precautions to contain this virus -- and common sense restrictions on travel from countries now confronting this epidemic is an important step,” Rubio said in a statement. “The most effective way to combat this deadly virus is to address it at its source.”
Rubio’s plan comes as both Democrats and Republicans in Congress have called on President Barack Obama to impose a ban on travelers from countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. The Obama administration has said that such a ban would prevent aid workers from getting resources to affected countries. Experts have said it may make tracking the spread of the disease more difficult.