The funding of the U.S. Postal Service has been a controversial topic recently. With many voters choosing to vote via mail in ballots, it is valid to be concerned about the general well-being of the U.S. Postal Service. Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, relief plans are being debated amongst Democrats and Republicans. NPR reports that “House Democrats included $25 billion for the Postal Service in a coronavirus relief package in May but are far from reaching agreement with Republicans.”
Newly appointed Postmaster General, Louis DeJoy is under fire for allegedly attempting to sabotage the U.S. Postal Service. The Associated Press reports that since DeJoy has held his position, he has “cut overtime, late delivery trips and other expenses that ensure mail arrives at its destination on time. The result has been a national slowdown of mail.” The Wall Street Journal says that in response, “nearly 200 House Democrats signed a letter this week accusing him of acting to ‘accelerate the crisis’ at the USPS.” DeJoy responded to these allegations by saying “The notion that I would ever make decisions concerning the Postal Service at the direction of the pPresident, or anyone else in the Administration, is wholly off-base. I serve at the pleasure of the governors of the Postal Service, a group that is bipartisan by statute and that will evaluate my performance in a nonpartisan fashion.” DeJoy has also recently announced that he will be suspending cost-cutting operational changes before Election Day. The Washington Post says that “Nancy Pelosi called the moves ‘wholly insufficient’ and said the pause ‘does not reverse damage already wrecked.’”
If things do not change quickly, this November could be a disaster for voters who are practicing their civic duty by mail this year due to the pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that mail-in voting is the safest way to vote. The Washington Post shares that “nearly 180 million Americans are eligible to vote by mail.” Fully functioning and fully funded U.S. Postal Services are imperative to the mail-in ballots that are going to be sent off this November. NPR reports that “last week President Trump said he opposes that extra funding for the Postal Service because he wants to make it harder to expand voting by mail” and that “House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer accused Trump of being willing to ‘manipulate the operations of the Post Office to deny eligible voters the ballot in pursuit of his own re-election.’” Considering that Democrats are more likely than Republicans to cast a mail-in-ballot, this is concerning for democratic voters to say the least.