The Volokh Conspiracy
Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent
The federal government's July 6 Directive announcing a change to student visa rules, which imperiled the status of online-only and hybrid international students, is being rescinded after much protest and multiple lawsuits by universities and states. The news was announced a few minutes ago at a hearing for the lawsuit by Harvard and MIT, which had been followed by lawsuits initiated by California and seventeen other states. This moots the TRO motion by Harvard/MIT and should conclude these various proceedings.
I do not have any further information at this time as to what led to the government's decision, so we are left to speculate about whether public pressure and/or the likelihood of another judicial defeat for the Trump Administration motivated it. In any case, it was the right call and hopefully puts the issue to rest for some time–ideally until COVID-19 is no longer a danger to public health.