Coronavirus: Trump officially declares national emergency and invokes Stafford Act

Donald Trump has declared the coronavirus a national emergency under the Stafford Act, allowing officials to access up to $50bn in funds set aside to deal with natural disasters.

More than 1,700 Americans have now tested positive for the virus, and 41 have died.

The president has talked about invoking emergency powers in recent days, saying: “We have very strong emergency powers under the Stafford Act.

“I have it memorised, practically, as to the powers in that act. And if I need to do something, I’ll do it. I have the right to do a lot of things that people don’t even know about.”

 

 

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