While Nancy Pelosi called the House members back to vote on legislation that will prohibit the USPS from any internal changes before the November election, Democrat lawmakers have been quick to attack President Trump’s appointee, Postmaster General DeJoy. DeJoy, who was trying to make the Post Office more efficient after years of problems, became the whipping boy as Democrat’s pushed the narrative President Trump is trying to suppress votes this November. DeJoy was forced to cave to the pressure and announced no internal changes would be made, despite legislation not being passed, and was called to testify before Congress.
DeJoy, who testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said “As we head in the election season, I want to assure this committee and the American public that the Postal Service is fully capable and committed to delivering the nation’s election mail securely and on time.” DeJoy said that remarks that the internal changes within the Post Office were deliberate, and with the purpose to delay and disrupt election results were a “false narrative.” Instead, the sweeping changes in the Post Office had to happen to keep the Post Office working, as the agency looks at a net loss of $11 billion for the fiscal year of 2020. The Postmaster General did, however, ask Congress for more money in order to help with the effects COVID-19 has had on the service.
Chairman Ron Johnson, Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, was quick to defend DeJoy and point the finger at Democrat’s for what he called “character assassination.” Johnson said the Democrats have put DeJoy “in the crosshairs of another hyperbolic false narrative.” He continued, “According to Democrats, the postmaster is trying to sabotage the postal system to disenfranchise voters in the upcoming election.”
The USPS became the focal story for many social media users, as false stories circulated on the web that the Post Office was deliberately removing post boxes from neighborhoods around the country. Only afterwards was it revealed that most of the boxes were being replaced or upgraded to new ones.
This debate has become the central point for Democrats ahead of the November election, as they argue it is “unsafe” for voters to go in-person to the polls and therefore, the nation should rely on mail-in voting. Republicans, however, have pointed to recent elections that rely on mail-in voting and in particular Carolyn Maloney’s race in New York, which took weeks to find out the results.
Why this matters: Lawmakers have altered their narrative to blame the other party as they see fit. Mail-in voting has not been proven to favor one party either way, but instead, has become a campaign issue about “stealing the election.” President Trump has been vocal in pushing for absentee voting, but insists that sending ballots to millions of Americans will prove to be a mess. Trump tweeted, “They are sending 51,000,000 Ballots to people who haven’t even requested a Ballot. Many of these people don’t even exist. They are trying to STEAL this election. This should not be allowed!”