Blunt Calls For Ban On Travel From Ebola-Stricken Countries | St. Louis Public Radio

Blunt Calls For Ban On Travel From Ebola-Stricken Countries

Oct 19, 2014

U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
Credit Bill Greenblatt | UPI

U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) is calling for a travel ban in response to the Ebola outbreak.

Speaking Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press, Missouri’s Republican senator said that the U.S. should temporarily suspend the visas of people traveling from the West African countries battling the disease.

“Before they get off the plane here they have to have a visa that allows them to stay here,” Blunt said. “I’d suspend those visas until we have this under better control and have a sense that the carriers that they are using are monitoring this in a better way than they have been up until now.”

Pointing to the three cases of Ebola diagnosed in the U.S., Blunt said he understands why people are worried about the spread of the disease.

“We’re just frankly not as safe as we were a month ago before you had multiple cases develop in the country,” he said. “And by the way, people didn’t get upset about this as long as hospitals were dealing with it in the right way.”

Blunt said he didn’t hear anyone express concern when Americans diagnosed in Africa were treated in the United States.

"It’s only when it’s not being handled correctly that people get concerned that it’s not being handled correctly,” he added.

When asked about temporarily making the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocol mandatory, however, Blunt said he was unsure how the hospital protocol would be enforced.

Follow Camille Phillips on Twitter: @cmpcamille.