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Trump mulls travel bans for U.S. virus hotspots

President Donald Trump discusses the coronavirus outbreak at a White House press briefing. (Global News via YouTube)

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, restrictions on European travel will be extended to Britain and Ireland on March 16 – and President Donald Trump said today that limits on travel from domestic hotspots such as the Seattle area were under consideration as well.

During a White House briefing on the administration’s response to the outbreak, Trump was asked whether he was thinking about domestic travel limitations.

“Specifically from certain areas, yes, we are,” the president replied. “We’re working with the states, and we are considering other restrictions.”

Seattle and the surrounding area in King County have been among the hottest hotspots in the early phases of the U.S. epidemic. As of March 13, King County accounted for about a quarter of the nation’s confirmed coronavirus cases, and nearly two-thirds of deaths.

Tara Lee, communications director for Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, said the topic of domestic travel restrictions hasn’t come up.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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