The Trump administration is weighing imposing a travel ban on members of the Chinese Communist Party and their families, keeping them from being able to enter the United States, The New York Times reports.
A presidential proclamation has been drafted that also gives the U.S. government the authority to revoke visas from party members and their families who are in the U.S., four people with knowledge of the matter said. The order would cite the same statute in the Immigration and Nationality Act used in 2017 to ban residents of several predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S.
The Chinese Communist Party has 92 million members, and the Times notes it would be extremely difficult for the U.S. to immediately determine if a traveler is a member of the party. Jude Blanchette, a China scholar at the Center for Strategic International Studies, told the Times the "overwhelming majority of CCP members have no involvement or input into Beijing's policymaking, so going after the entire party membership is like China sanctioning all Republicans because of frustrations with Trump."
If the proposal goes through, it will likely lead to retaliation by the Chinese government. "Such a move would inflame public opinion in China, as this would target nearly 10 percent of the entire Chinese population and would do so based on blanket assertions of guilt," Blanchette said.