U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy announced that he’s suspending the controversial changes to the post office. But that doesn’t mean Pres. Donald Trump’s administration will go down without a fight against mail-in voting.
This week, DeJoy announced that he’d suspend all changes to the United States Postal Service (USPS) until after the election. These changes included removing mail boxes and mail sorting machines from post offices ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
“The Postal Service is ready today to handle whatever volume of election mail it receives this fall,” stated DeJoy. “Even with the challenges of keeping our employees and customers safe and healthy as they operate amid a pandemic, we will deliver the nation’s election mail on time and within our well-established service standards. The American public should know that this is our No. 1 priority between now and election day. The 630,000 dedicated women and men of the Postal Service are committed, ready and proud to meet this sacred duty.”
However, legal representatives for the administration continued to file lawsuits around the country while violating the Republican Party’s “state’s rights” mantra.
On Saturday, Aug. 22, the House approved the Delivering for America Act to improve mail delivery nationwide and provide USPS $25 billion to handle the expected increase in traffic from mail-in ballots for the 2020 election.
Just days after DeJoy’s announcement, the Trump administration filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court against the State of New Jersey over Gov. Phil Murphy’s executive order requiring every voter in the state to receive a mail-in ballot even if the person plans to vote in person. Trump’s legal team wants the order invalidated claiming Murphy has violated the Elections Clause of the U.S. Constitution and the 14th amendment.
In Pennsylvania, the Trump administration is suing the state over mail-in voting as well as citing the potential for voter fraud. In a recent update, District Judge J. Nicholas Ranjan wrote that Republicans needed to show evidence of voter fraud to the Democratic Party and the Sierra Club. Democrats asked Trump’s legal team for examples of voter fraud, but they refused.
These lawsuits (and dozens of others) are why the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and it’s pro bono council, Arnold & Porter, LLP, filed a lawsuit in Maryland on behalf of the League of Women Voters U.S., Common Cause and the National Urban League against DeJoy and the USPS challenging DeJoy’s intention to allegedly disrupt the 2020 presidential election. “Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has wreaked havoc across the country with reckless policies intended to disrupt the timely delivery of mail just weeks in advance of a general election,” stated Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law President and Executive Director Kristen Clarke. “Without question, DeJoy is weaponizing the United States Postal Service to disenfranchise Americans who choose to vote by mail amid an unprecedented pandemic gripping the nation.
“We are filing this lawsuit to stop actions that were adopted unlawfully and that were intended to cause delays intended to disrupt the November election,” continued Clarke. “DeJoy’s statement vowing to suspend changes rings hollow in the absence of remedial action taken to address the damage that his actions have caused.”
During a media briefing, Trump said he’d sign the bill to fund the post office even though he doesn’t like it.
“We’ll take care of the Post Office,” said Trump. “We want to make sure that the Post Office runs properly, and it hasn’t run properly for many years. For probably 50 years, it’s run very badly. So we want to make sure that the Post Office runs properly and doesn’t lose billions of dollars. Somebody said it lost $78 billion over a relatively short period of time. That’s over years—$78 billion. So you can’t have that.”
Trump alleged that people have complained about the post office for late deliveries and that’s why they’re being beat by companies like Amazon. However, he’s not against mail-in voting all the way. In certain electoral battle states, he’s fine with it.
“Absentee ballots are great,” said Trump. “You request a ballot, you can’t be—I signed an absentee ballot,” said Trump. “Absentee ballots are great. They work. They’ve been proven. They’re good—like in Florida. But this universal mail-in is a very dangerous thing. It’s fraught with fraud and every other thing that can happen, and we have to be very, very careful.”
This isn’t surprising to Richard C. Esq, a lawyer and author of the recently-released “VOTING: The Ultimate Act Of Resistance.” He told the AmNews that Trump isn’t really hiding his electoral playbook from the public.
“I’ll give them this, it’s inherently evil,” Bell said to the AmNews. “We all know now that this would absolutely delay the mail. Why, because the elderly aren’t getting their 90-day subscription meds, people getting checks late and it all took very little time to happen.
“It’s almost like a test case to see if this would work.”
According to Trump, people like Bell have nothing to worry about.
“We have a very big election coming up. I think we’re going to do very well,” Trump said at his briefing. “And I want to make sure the election is not stolen, and so does everybody else. And I’m sure both sides feel that way. So we have to be very careful with this universal, mail-in ballot.”
Bell said that even though they’ve suspended the changes, the damage has been done and that’s what they intended to do.
“He’s attempting to create a crisis of confidence in the integrity of the voting system in case he loses and then he can attack the system of corruption when it’s just the opposite.”