Americans Returning from Europe See Huge Lines as Enhanced Coronavirus Screenings Roll Out

Travelers walk through O'Hare International Airport (ORD) in Chicago, Illinois, U.S., on Thursday, March 12, 2020. President Trump said he will significantly restrict travel from Europe to the U.S. for the next 30 days, the most far-reaching measure yet in the administration's efforts to combat the spread of coronavirus. Photo by Kyle Grillot/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By Jared Evan 

Americans returning home from Europe and other Coronavirus infected nations faced long lines at JFK and Newark airports as passengers had to undergo new rules enacted by the Trump administration to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

The N.Y Post reported “John F. Kennedy, Newark and O’Hare international airports three of the 13 airports selected to handle the flights had massive crowds and hours-long waits as they attempted to return to the states” 

Some leaders have strongly criticized Vice President Mike Pence who has been given the responsibility of creating the Coronavirus task force, claiming the enhanced screening actually conflicts with CDC guidelines. 

A.P reported: “ Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, both Democrats, lambasted the administration for allowing about 3,000 Americans returning from Europe to be stuck for hours inside the customs area at O’Hare International Airport on Saturday, violating federal recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that people practice “social distancing.”

In other words, the new guidelines are actually contradicting recommended actions by the CDC, particularly distancing oneself from people in large crowds.  

It should be noted that when President Trump tried to initially stop flights from China, earlier in the year when Coronavirus first started becoming a serious issue, many Democrats decried the policy to be “racist”. 

As recent as last week Presidential front runner Joe Biden lambasted Trump for daring to mention that the Coronavirus came out China as “xenophobic” in a basically senseless criticism.

The N.Y Post highlighted several people who experienced the chaos at the airport’s comments on social media. 

“So, the enhanced screening for #COVID19 also includes having everyone trying to get home from int’l flights stand super close together in massively long lines at customs? Cool, cool. Just making sure”, Tweeted Lindsey Irwin at Newark airport. 

People coming from everywhere packed together without enough distancing & waiting for at least an hour… like a giant Petri dish,” tweeted Claudia Gonzaga from JFK.

The Americans returning home from Europe were screened by federal customs and homeland security agents for symptoms at the 13 major airports accepting flights from Europe, A.P reported.

Socialist mayor of Chicago, who has overseen record murders and bloodshed in her city, Lori Lightfoot, was quick and swift with her criticism without having a solution to the long lines herself.

“People were forced into conditions that are against CDC guidance and are totally unacceptable,” Lightfoot said.

The administration faced bi-partisan criticism as AP reported: “Texas Gov. Greg Abbot, a Republican and strong supporter of the president, tweeted Sunday that the lines in Dallas were unacceptable & I’m working hard to get it fixed. He said he had contacted the head of Homeland Security, acting Secretary Chad Wolf

As of Sunday, the conditions have improved and the lines have gotten smaller, AP reported.