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Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-Paterson). (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

Pascrell slams Trump for new USPS guidance that will delay some mail

Policy shift ‘a stunning act of sabotage,’ congressman says

By Nikita Biryukov, July 14 2020 2:59 pm

Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-Paterson) slammed President Donald Trump over a shift at the U.S. Postal Service that will see some mail deliveries.

“The deliberate delaying of Americans’ mail delivery would be a stunning act of sabotage against our postal service,” Pascrell said. “If these reports are accurate, Trump and his cronies are openly seeking to destroy the post office during the worst public health crisis in a century.”

On Tuesday, The Washington Post reported an internal USPS memo sent by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a top Trump donor, that told postal workers to leave mail sitting at distribution centers if processing it would delay postal carriers.

The move comes as New Jersey and states across the country are relying more and more on the postal service to deliver mail-in ballots in a bid to minimize the threat posed by COVID-19.

The already beleaguered agency faced fire for slow or faulty delivery of mail-in ballots during non-partisan municipal elections held in May.

In some cases, returned vote-by-mail ballots took weeks to reach election officials. In others, postal workers returned completed mail-in ballots to voters instead of election officials or left stacks of mail-in ballots unattended in apartment building lobbies.

It’s not clear whether the Postal Service’s new policy applies to political mail and mail-in ballots.

“Attacks on USPS not only threaten our economy and the jobs of 600,000 workers. With states now reliant on voting by mail to continue elections during the pandemic, the destabilizing of the post office is a direct attack on American democracy itself,” Pascrell said. “It has been 58 days since the House passed $25 billion to help keep USPS alive. The Senate must pass the HEORES Act now. Democracy hangs in the balance.”

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