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Gov. Lamont, AG Tong announce lawsuit over President Trump's proposal to revoke int'l students' visas

The guidance says international students won't be exempt from losing their visas even if an outbreak forces their schools online during the fall term.

HARTFORD, Conn — Governor Ned Lamont and Attorney General WIlliam Tong were joined by other leaders and students from Connecticut colleges to speak out against new guidance by the Trump administration. 

They announced that Connecticut has joined 17 other states in a lawsuit suing the Trump administration over President Trump's proposal to revoke international students' visas.

The new rules, which AG Tong quotes as "cruel and unnecessary" would revoke student visas for international students if their college or university chooses to teach online this upcoming fall semester. 

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement notified colleges last Monday that international students will be forced to leave the U.S. or transfer to another college if their schools operate entirely online this fall. New visas will not be issued to students at those schools, and others at universities offering a mix of online and in-person classes will be barred from taking all of their classes online.

The guidance says international students won't be exempt even if an outbreak forces their schools online during the fall term.

President Donald Trump has insisted that schools and universities return to in-person instruction as soon as possible. The rules say international students must take at least some of their classes in person. New visas will not be issued to students at schools or programs that are entirely online. 

Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology filed a federal lawsuit last Wednesday, challenging the Trump administration's decision.

The lawsuit, filed in Boston's federal court, seeks to prevent federal immigration authorities from enforcing the rule. The universities contend that the directive violates the Administrative Procedures Act because officials failed to offer a reasonable basis justifying the policy and because the public was not given notice to comment on it.

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