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Trump entering the Oval Office on Dec. 31. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

President Trump on Thursday extended pandemic-era bans on certain immigrant and work visas until March 31.

Why it matters: The bans — issued in April and June and set to expire on Thursday — go against the recommendations of business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and tech companies who have argued that they will encourage investment abroad, inhibit economic growth and reduce job creation.

  • The restrictions include a ban on green cards issued abroad, H-1B work visas and several other employment-based visas.

Context: Trump leveraged emergency powers and economic concern from the coronavirus over the summer to slowly shut down large parts of the immigration system in the name of protecting American workers from foreign competition, per Axios' Stef Kight.

The big picture: President-elect Joe Biden has criticized the restrictions but has not said whether his administration would immediately reverse them after he takes office on Jan. 20, according to Reuters.

Go deeper

Biden to propose pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

One his first day in office, President-elect Biden will propose legislation that would give an eight-year path to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants.

Why it matters: The proposal — the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 — is a stark shift away from former President Trump's harsh policies and rhetoric on immigration and fulfills a campaign promise of Biden's.

Biden will reverse Trump's travel ban on several Muslim-majority countries

People protest former President Trump's Muslim travel ban outside the Supreme Court on June 26, 2018. Photo by Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty

President-elect Biden will reverse President Trump's controversial policy restricting travel for nationals from several Muslim-majority countries.

Why it matters: The ban restricted travel and immigration, to varying degrees, for about 7% of the world's population. Biden previously blamed Trump for the "unconscionable rise in Islamophobia."

Kaine, Collins' censure resolution seeks to bar Trump from holding office again

Sen. Tim Kaine (center) and Sen. Susan Collins (right). Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool via Getty Images

Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) are forging ahead with a draft proposal to censure former President Trump, and are considering introducing the resolution on the Senate floor next week.

Why it matters: Senators are looking for a way to condemn Trump on the record as it becomes increasingly unlikely Democrats will obtain the 17 Republican votes needed to gain a conviction, Axios Alayna Treene writes. "I think it’s important for the Senate's leadership to understand that there are alternatives," Kaine told CNN on Wednesday.