Plus three other things you need to know today.
A second American is confirmed to have coronavirus
On Friday morning, CDC officials announced a second confirmed case of coronavirus in the U.S. The 60-year-old Chicago woman returned from Wuhan, China, on Jan. 13 and soon started showing symptoms. She has been placed in isolation and is being monitored. Sixty-three people in 22 states are also being monitored for symptoms related to the new virus strain. In central China, 13 cities and 36 million people are on lockdown as coronavirus infections spread. The country has canceled Lunar New Year celebrations and the U.S. has issued a no-travel advisory for Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, and Hubei province.
U.S. tightens rules on visas to prevent so-called ‘birth tourism’
The State Department unveiled new rules effective today that are aimed at curbing the number of pregnant travelers looking to give birth in the U.S. for the “primary purpose” of obtaining U.S. citizenship for the child. There are no guidelines provided on how officials should ascertain the medical status of applicants for the temporary tourist visas. The rules also make it harder for people traveling to the U.S. for medical treatment.
SCOTUS ruling on funds for parochial schools could weaken church and state separation
With its five-justice conservative majority, the U.S. Supreme Court appears ready to strike down a Montana constitutional provision that blocks religious schools from receiving state funds. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito compared the exclusion of religious schools from state aid to racial discrimination, while Justice Brett Kavanaugh repeatedly implied parochial schools should receive equal treatment. Thirty-seven other states also have constitutional provisions barring aid to religious schools, and a ruling against Montana could fuel more attacks on the separation of church and state.
Trump to become first president to speak at March for Life rally
President Trump has received an outpouring of praise from anti-abortion activists and lawmakers ahead of his plans today to speak at the annual March for Life rally to end abortion care. The announcement came on Jan. 22, 2020—on the 47th anniversary of Roe v. Wade—amid nationwide rollbacks to reproductive care access.