The U.S. Postal Service was out there minding its business until the bully-in-chief took aim at the public service, calling it a joke, demanding it increase prices and claiming that mail-in voting would be compromised. When he was done with all his orange unhinged ranting, Trump did what he’s done throughout his presidency, which is to make sure someone was in place to do his dirty work.
Trump’s boy Louis DeJoy became the postmaster general in May. Besides mailing letters and buying the stamps of the Confederacy, DeJoy has absolutely no qualifications for this position, but he did have one quality that has always been impressive to Trump: DeJoy is a huge Republican donor, and more specifically, a Trump donor.
Since taking over the U.S. Postal Service, DeJoy is either so inept that he’s fucking things up, or he is actively working to create mail delays and possibly a clusterfuck during election time. Either way, whether accidental or intentional, he’s doing a great job that only benefits the president.
According to the Washington Post, DeJoy has implemented new cost-saving measures that have created a huge backlog of mail, which is coming right around the time that coronavirus numbers are forcing states to consider expanding mail-in voting and around the time that the president has floated the idea of delaying the November election (which he can’t do, by the way), just as the president’s polling numbers show him trailing the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden like a kite string. This year could likely see a record number of mail-in ballots and President Trump’s boy is fucking up the mail system something awful.
From the Post:
DeJoy, a North Carolina logistics executive who donated more than $2 million to GOP political committees in the past four years, approved changes that took effect July 13 that the agency said were aimed at cutting costs for the debt-laden mail service. They included prohibiting overtime pay, shutting down sorting machines early and requiring letter carriers to leave mail behind when necessary to avoid extra trips or late delivery on routes.
The new policies have resulted in at least a two-day delay in scattered parts of the country, even for express mail, according to multiple postal workers and union leaders. Letter carriers are manually sorting more mail, adding to the delivery time. Bins of mail ready for delivery are sitting in post offices because of scheduling and route changes. And without the ability to work overtime, workers say the logjam is worsening without an end in sight.
As states look to dramatically expand the use of mail-in ballots this fall, postal workers across the country said the changes could lead to chaos in November.
“I’m actually terrified to see election season under the new procedure,” said Lori Cash, president of the American Postal Workers Union (APWU) Local 183 in Western New York.
David Partenheimer, spokesman for the U.S. Postal Service, said the recent changes aim to stabilize the agency after decades of financial woes. The procedures are not meant to slow the delivery of ballots or any other mail, he said, also asserting that any problems will be short-lived.
“Of course we acknowledge that temporary service impacts can occur . . . but any such impacts will be monitored and temporary,” Partenheimer said.
During a recent meeting with DeJoy, “the head of one of the nation’s largest postal workers unions said he shared the ‘deep concerns’ of postal workers that the new procedures are causing mounting backlogs that could affect the election.”
“I vehemently weighed in that this is wrong,” Mark Dimondstein, president of the APWU, which represents more than 200,000 postal employees and retirees, told the Post. “It’s wrong for the people of the country, it’s wrong for the public Postal Service. It drives away business and revenue. And it’s wrong for the workers.”
Some Michigan voters have already filed complaints with the Postal Service because despite having an Aug. 4 primary, some haven’t even received their ballots as of this week. Election clerks are even asking Michigan voters to drop off ballots Tuesday instead of mailing them because they are afraid that they might not be received in time to be counted.
“I don’t think it’s a widespread issue, but anytime we get mail delayed, especially first-class, or not delivered at all, it becomes a concern,” Phil Kerns, the city clerk of Frankenmuth, in the central part of Michigan, told the Post.
Former President, and current president of Black people worldwide, Barack Obama even took a swing at Trump’s attempts to muddy up mail-in voting during the election while speaking at civil rights icon John Lewis’ funeral.
“Those in power who are doing their darndest to discourage people from voting . . . even undermining the Postal Service in the run-up to an election that’s going to be dependent on mail-in ballots so people don’t get sick,” the Post reports.
Sens. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Thomas R. Carper (D-Del.), authored a letter demanding DeJoy—who has aptly been nicknamed “DeLay”—share information about new procedures he’s implemented since taking over.
“Your failure to provide Congress with relevant information about these recent changes or to clarify to postal employees what changes you have directed as Postmaster General, undermines public trust and only increases concerns that service compromises will grow in advance of the election and peak mail volumes in November,” they wrote.
Also from the Post:
Weeks after DeJoy took over, agency officials released an internal memo announcing a “pivot” for all employees.
Traditionally, postal workers are trained not to leave letters behind and to make multiple delivery trips to ensure mail is delivered on time — which can incur extra costs in overtime hours, transportation and more.
Officials laid out a shift away from this approach, saying that such practices cost the organization about $200 million in added expenses, according to the memo, which was obtained by The Post.
Among the changes is a new, strict cutoff time in the morning for mail carriers to pick up items to deliver that day, several postal employees from three different states said.
The machines that typically sort mail and prepare them for pickup by carriers are being shut down earlier in some areas to cut costs, requiring carriers to sort more mail by hand once they arrive in the morning.
That means any mail that is not ready by cutoff time waits at least another day. And if there is any error in hand-sorted mail, it needs to be rerouted to another carrier — which could lead to three to four extra days of waiting. As a result of these changes, guaranteed shipping dates are not being met, the employees said.
“This is forced. These are things that don’t have to happen,” one worker from Pennsylvania said.
Unless, of course, these delays—these self-inflicted delays—help the man who you’ve given campaign donations steal an election. Then, it all makes sense.
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