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Protesters gather in Kalorama Park in D.C. today before demonstrating outside the condo of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy. Photo: Cheriss May/Reuters

The Postal Service has urged state election officials to pay first class for mail ballots, which Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer says could nearly triple the cost.

Why it matters: Senate Democrats claim that "it has been the practice of USPS to treat all election mail as First Class mail regardless of the paid class of service."

USPS public relations manager Dave Partenheimer told me by email: "For years, the Postal Service has emphasized to the election community that delivery times are based on the class of service paid for by the mailer."

  • Partenheimer's statement says the lower rate "will result in slower delivery times and will increase the risk that voters will not receive their ballots in time to return them by mail."

Go deeper: Read a letter from Senate Democrats to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy

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Go deeper

Oct 17, 2020 - Politics & Policy

The wait to vote

Photo: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

Above: People in Atlanta wait to cast ballots on the first day of early voting for the general election, Oct. 12, 2020.

Below: Voters in cars line up at a drive-through mail ballot drop-off site on October 7, 2020 in Houston after Texas Gov. Gregg Abbott issued an executive order limiting each county to one mail ballot drop-off site.

52 mins ago - World

Scoop: Jake Sullivan discussed Saudi-Israel normalization with MBS

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/Bloomberg and Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan raised normalization with Israel during his recent meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, three U.S. and Arab sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Saudi Arabia would be the biggest regional player to sign onto the "Abraham Accords" peace agreement with Israel, and such a major breakthrough would likely convince other Arab and Muslim countries to follow suit.

Tech's leaky world

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Tech companies are learning what everyone in Washington already knows: Leaks of confidential info are inevitable, and "plumbing" operations to close them rarely work.

Why it matters: Most tech firms talk up the power of transparency but prefer to keep details of their operations secret from competitors and the public. Researchers, regulators and the media are increasingly relying on information provided by dissident employees and whistleblowers to see inside companies' workings.