What a goddamn mess!

Courtesy of CNN:

The internal watchdog at the United States Postal Service is reviewing controversial policy changes recently imposed under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, and is also examining DeJoy’s compliance with federal ethics rules, according to a spokeswoman for the USPS inspector general and an aide to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who requested the review.

Lawmakers from both parties and postal union leaders have sounded alarms over disruptive changes instituted by DeJoy this summer, including eliminating overtime and slowing some mail delivery. Democrats claim he is intentionally undermining postal service operations to sabotage mail-in voting in the November election — a charge he denies.

Agapi Doulaveris, a spokeswoman for the USPS watchdog, told CNN in an email, “We have initiated a body of work to address the concerns raised, but cannot comment on the details.”

Last week, Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, and eight other Democratic lawmakers asked the inspector general to launch an inquiry into DeJoy on a number of fronts, including the nationwide policy changes he’s made since taking over in June, as well as whether DeJoy has “met all ethics requirements.”

“We have learned that the United States Postal Service Office of the Inspector General is investigating all aspects of our request,” Warren spokeswoman Saloni Sharma told CNN.

The added scrutiny by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle has had some effect.

Also courtesy of CNN:

The US Postal Service will stop taking letter collection boxes off streets in Western states following accusations the removals would further limit some voters ability to send back mail-in ballots.

The change came after CNN and others reported on Friday that the US Postal Service has started reducing post office operating hours across several states and removing letter collection boxes, according to union officials.

In a statement Friday night, Rod Spurgeon — a USPS spokesperson for the service’s the Western region — told CNN that the service will stop the removal of letter collection boxes in 16 states and parts of two others until after the election.

That means, according to Spurgeon, the USPS will stop collecting the letter collection boxes only in: Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Idaho, Montana, South Dakota, North Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Iowa, Alaska, Nebraska and small parts of Wisconsin and Missouri.

It’s not clear if the removal freeze would go into effect across the nation. Kim Frum — a spokeswoman for USPS based at headquarters — could not say if the freeze would go into effect across the country and would not comment on the freeze in the Western region.

Officials say that in the last week the USPS has removed letter collection boxes in at least four states: New York, Oregon, Montana and Indiana. The USPS has also begun notifying postal workers in at least three states — West Virginia, Florida and Missouri — that they will start to reduce their retail operating hours, according to union officials.

In the meantime, the USPS is warning that some of the damage has already been done.

Courtesy of WaPo:

Anticipating an avalanche of absentee ballots, the U.S. Postal Service recently sent detailed letters to 46 states and D.C. warning that it cannot guarantee all ballots cast by mail for the November election will arrive in time to be counted — adding another layer of uncertainty ahead of the high-stakes presidential contest.

The letters sketch a grim possibility for the tens of millions of Americans eligible for a mail-in ballot this fall: Even if people follow all of their state’s election rules, the pace of Postal Service delivery may disqualify their votes.

The Postal Service’s warnings of potential disenfranchisement came as the agency undergoes a sweeping organizational and policy overhaul amid dire financial conditions. Cost-cutting moves have already delayed mail delivery by as much as a week in some places, and a new decision to decommission 10 percent of the Postal Service’s sorting machines sparked widespread concern the slowdowns will only worsen. Rank-and-file postal workers say the move is ill-timed and could sharply diminish the speedy processing of flat mail, including letters and ballots.

In light of all of this, the next revelation should come as no surprise.

Courtesy of NBC News:

Joe Biden gained the presidential endorsement of the National Association of Letter Carriers on Friday, a union that boasts nearly 300,000 active and retired postal workers.

“Vice President Biden is — was — and will continue to be — a fierce ally and defender of the United States Postal Service (USPS), letter carriers, and our fellow postal brothers and sisters,” NALC president Fredric Rolando said in a statement that also praised Democratic vice presidential pick Kamala Harris.

“Together, Biden and Harris fully exhibit the experience, dedication, thoughtfulness and steady hands that will work to ensure that letter carriers and working families are put first,” he said.

The endorsement comes less than three months before Election Day and a day after President Donald Trump said he opposes Postal Service funding pushed by Democrats, noting that those resources were necessary to advance the cause of mail-in voting during the coronavirus pandemic.

Onc has to wonder how people continue to wear those MAGA hats unironically when the way Trump made America great again was by helping to infect millions of Americans with a dangerous virus and by fucking up the mail?