Democratic leaders are calling for an emergency meeting to address Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s sweeping changes to the United States Postal Service.
A hearing is set to take place on Aug. 24 with top USPS officials expected to testify before Congress. They will be asked about their ability to handle mail-in-voting. Earlier this week, DeJoy sent letters to post offices across the nation to inform them that some of the mail-in ballots from their location may not be delivered in time to count.
Former President Barack Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have both put Trump and his administration on blast for admitting to purposely keeping the USPS underfunded as a way to deter vote-by-mail.
Most people are expected to vote-by-mail, including the president and his wife, because of the pandemic. Polling places tend to be crowded and may increase the spread of Coronavirus.
People have reported seeing the removal of public mailboxes from street corners and post office workers have reported that mail sorting machines have gone missing from their posts.
“The president has explicitly stated his intention to manipulate the Postal Service to deny eligible voters access to the ballot in pursuit of his own re-election,” a statement signed by Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and others read. “Alarmingly, the Postmaster General — a Trump mega-donor — has acted as an accomplice in the president’s campaign to cheat in the election, as he launches sweeping new operational changes that degrade delivery standards and delay the mail.”
“The Postal Service itself has warned that voters — even if they send in their ballots by state deadlines — may be disenfranchised in 46 states and in Washington, D.C., by continued delays,” the statement continued.
Postmaster DeJoy and Postal Service Board of Governors Chairman Michael Duncan are scheduled to stand before the House Oversight Committee next Monday, though the House is not set to return until early September.
Schumer is also calling on the Senate to hold similar hearings to undo recent postal changes.
“If Mr. DeJoy refuses to appear before Congress and the American people to testify, he should be stamped ‘Return to Sender,’” Schumer said. “He shouldn’t be allowed to be the postmaster general.”
Residents in Washington, D.C., who are among the additional 46 places who may not have their ballots delivered on time, have loudly let DeJoy know their displeasure in his new policies. On Saturday (Aug. 15), demonstrators marched down to the postmaster general’s D.C. condo while banging pots and pans as a “wake up call.”