Aug 8, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Postmaster general reorganizes USPS ahead of November election

U.S. Postmaster General Louis Dejoy in Congress on Aug. 5.

U.S. Postmaster General Louis Dejoy in Congress on Aug. 5. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy announced a reorganization of the U.S. Postal Service's leadership on Friday, shifting top personnel and pushing structural changes, according to the Washington Post.

Why it matters: The restructure, which reassigns or displaces postal executives, including two officials who oversee day-to-day operations, comes amid increased scrutiny from Democratic lawmakers, who fear that DeJoy's changes could threaten the use of mail-in ballots for the November election.

  • Earlier this summer, DeJoy — a major donor to President Trump’s campaign efforts — implemented a number of cost-cutting measures, including prohibiting overtime and altered delivery policies — changes that Democrats fear will hamstring deliveries.

What they're saying: DeJoy told USPS' Board of Governors on Friday that, "If public policy makers choose to utilize the mail as a part of their election system, we will do everything we can to deliver Election Mail in a timely manner consistent with our operational standards.

  • "We do ask election officials and voters to be mindful of the time that it takes for us to deliver ballots, whether it is a blank ballot going to a voter or a completed ballot going back to election officials."
  • He added that "standards have not changed, and despite any assertions to the contrary, we are not slowing down Election Mail or any other mail. Instead, we continue to employ a robust and proven process to ensure proper handling of all Election Mail."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer wrote in a letter to DeJoy on Thursday that they "believe these changes, made during the middle of a once-in-a-century pandemic, now threaten the timely delivery of mail — including medicines for seniors, paychecks for workers, and absentee ballots for voters."

  • "We believe these changes must be reversed."

The big picture: Trump meanwhile has relentlessly claimed that mail-in ballots will produce voter fraud and "rig" the election, but has not provided evidence for his fears.

  • The House Oversight Committee called on DeJoy to testify about these changes on Sept. 17.
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