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Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Postmaster has no plans to replace voting machines, drop boxes

Mail-in ballots are expected to flood the postal service as Americans opt to vote absentee this year amid the coronavirus outbreak.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi revealed Wednesday that Postmaster General Louis DeJoy does not intend to restore blue mailboxes and sorting equipment that were removed amid President’s Trump’s complaints against mail-in ballots. 

DeJoy, a GOP donor and staunch Trump supporter, previously vowed to close mail processing facilities, cut overtime and remove many blue mailboxes from street corners as cost-cutting measures until after the Nov. 3 election. 

Following public outcry, complaints from Democrats and threats of lawsuits, DeJoy announced Tuesday he would “suspend” his initiatives until after the election “to avoid even the appearance of impact on election mail.”

Read More: Democrats investigate the head of USPS after sudden changes

“We will deliver the nation’s election mail on time,” DeJoy said in a statement.

“I don’t, frankly, trust the postmaster general,” Pelosi said Wednesday in San Francisco. “If he’s sincere about it, it means the bully has backed off.”

Pelosi said when she spoke with DeJoy Wednesday morning, she explained that his reversal “is not a solution and is misleading,” The Hill reports.  

“The Postmaster General’s alleged pause is wholly insufficient and does not reverse damage already wreaked. The Postmaster General frankly admitted that he had no intention of replacing the sorting machines, blue mailboxes and other key mail infrastructure that have been removed and that plans for adequate overtime, which is critical for the timely delivery of mail, are not in the works,” she said in a statement on Wednesday.

“All of these changes directly jeopardize the election and disproportionately threaten to disenfranchise voters in communities of color,” Pelosi added. “At the same time, we are highly concerned that the slowdown of the delivery of medicines to veterans is not being sufficiently addressed.” 

An earlier report on theGRIO noted the Postmaster general’s plan to halt some operational changes until after the November election. Democrats had contended that the changes caused disruptions that threatened mail-in voting, and some states planned to file lawsuits.

Mail-in ballots are expected to flood the postal service as Americans opt to vote absentee this year amid the coronavirus outbreak.

DeJoy will appear Friday before the Senate to testify on mail delivery delays and service changes that lawmakers and others are warning could imperil the November election.

The top Democrat on the Homeland Security panel seeking DeJoy’s testimony called the Postal Service “a lifeline” to Americans.

Read More: What we have to lose: Everything Trump has cost Black America in 4 years

The House is expected to vote Saturday on legislation that would prohibit changes at the agency. The package will also include $25 billion to shore up the Postal Service, which faces continued financial losses.

The GOP-controlled Senate, however, may not pass a stand-alone Postal Service bill.

“The Postal Service is Election Central during the pandemic, and Democrats will not allow the President to force Americans to choose between their health and their vote,” Pelosi said.

“We have to save the Post Office from the President now,” she said late Monday on MSNBC.

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The post Postmaster has no plans to replace voting machines, drop boxes appeared first on TheGrio.

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