I first noticed a problem with the post office when I sent my granddaughter a letter over twelve days ago and she still has not received it. Normally, she receives my mail in one or two days since she lives only 60 miles south of Atlanta.
“What is going on with the slow mail delivery?” I inquired of a postal mail carrier
“They are removing machines that sort the mail causing the mail to pile up and not get delivered on time. Many executives have been fired and we fear we are next to be fired,” the mail carrier told Streets of Atlanta.
On national television, Trump admits that he refused to fund the post office and said, “If they don’t get the money, they can’t have universal mail-in voting.” He says mail-in voting is riddled with fraud but there is no proof or evidence of this.
Trump is stepping up a program begun by Republicans during the Bush administration that aimed to privatize the self-funded postal service.
However, the Founders never intended the U.S. Postal Service to be managed like a for profit business. The mail delivery agency is supposed to serve the public good and not be privatized to make huge profits for Trump’s rich friends.
Trump is taking advantage of attempts to privatize the post office to deliberately sabotage it to suppress the vote and undermine confidence in voting by mail. He fears a large mail-in vote will put Biden in the White House and put him in the Big House. He will do anything to stay in power because numerous criminal lawsuits are waiting for him when he is out of power.
So he put one of his major donors, Louis DeJoy, in as Postmaster General. DeJoy donated more than $1.2 million to the Trump Victory Fund and is in charge of fundraising for the 2020 Republican National Convention.
DeJoy is not qualified to run the United States Postal Service but he is qualified to help Trump win re-election by intentionally undermining the postal system to slow mail delivery. The post office did not have piles of mail undelivered before DeJoy took over.
DeJoy’s draconian policies include not paying mail carriers and clerks the overtime necessary to ensure that deliveries can be completed each day, causing mail to be left behind on docks, resulting in a backlog of mail across the U.S. Next came the “Friday Night Massacre” when he fired many of the senior service postal executives who knew how to run the day-to-day operations of the post office. He has directed post offices to no longer treat all election mail as First Class.
The removal of unknown numbers of blue letter collection mailboxes created so much blowback from the public until DeJoy stopped removing boxes until after the election.
Recently the U.S. Postal Service announced it is removing 671 high volume mail processing machines ahead of the November 3, 2020, elections. Each machine can process 35,000 pieces of mail per hour. These are the machines that would help sort mail-in ballots for the 2020 election. Some of these multi-million dollar machines have been found in the trash, according to news reports.
These changes made during a pandemic are being put in place before the 2020 general election and may force the elderly and people with underlying medical conditions to choose between their health and standing in line for hours where they may contact COVID.
The slowdown also threatens the delivery of mail for millions of seniors and veterans who receive their prescriptions, Social Security, and pension checks by mail. People may die if they don’t receive their medicine in a timely manner.
DeJoy and his wife have a conflict of interest because they own over $75 million in assets in postal service competitors like UPS, XPO Logistics, and J.B. Hunt trucking company, according to government records. Under federal law, it’s illegal for federal government employees or their spouses to have a financial interest in companies that intersect with their official duties.
Trump and DeJoy may have violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act that criminalized mail fraud and delays in the mail service. The mail statues make it criminal for anyone to use the mail in furtherance of a scheme to defraud.
They certainly are trying to defraud the American public out of their right to vote by mail to further their scheme to win the election.
CITIZENS PROTEST TO SAVE THE POST OFFICE
Activists and organizations nationwide hit the streets to protest DeJoy’s changes to the U.S. Postal Service.
Atlanta Grandmothers for Peace are standing in front of the Little Five Points Post Office holding signs that read: “Fire DeJoy Save the USPS, Support Our Postal Workers, USPS Sabotage = Voter Suppression, Deliver De Mail, Depose DeJoy, and Honk If You Love the Post Office.”
Grandmothers’ call to action was to restore sorting machines, protect mail-in ballots, restore postal workers overtime pay, and ensure timely delivery of the mail, and prescription medicine during a COVID pandemic that has already killed over 170 thousand Americans.
Georgia Alliance for Social Justice, Indivisible Georgia Coalition, Indivisible Georgia 04, Indivisible Georgia Sixth District, and Resist Trump Tuesday all joined together in front of Senator Perdue Buckhead office to protest the postal changes to slow down the mail delivery.
“Our ability to vote by mail during a pandemic is being threatened. Prescriptions, Social Security benefits, and VA benefits are being delayed. The responsibility for this is directly in the hands of our Senators who have done nothing to try and stop it from happening,” Caroline Stover, Georgia Alliance for Social Justice, a co-organizer of the event said in a press release.
“This is a desperate situation especially for people with underlying medical conditions that are vulnerable to the COVID virus. They have very few choices now and this is unconstitutional,” Stover tells the Streets of Atlanta.
Stover recommends to the elderly and people with medical issues “go to https://georgia.gov/vote-absentee-ballot and https://www.mvp.sos.ga.gov/MVP/mvp.do website and request your absentee ballot, then vote and send it in right away. That is what we are hearing from voting experts.”
“What we can do to protect the post office from attacks from Trump is to put pressure on our Senators Perdue and Loeffler and not let up for one minute. Make sure they make a statement to the State of Georgia that they will protect the post office, fund the HEROS ACT (H.R.6800) with money included for the post office as well as funding for those who are unemployed and need benefits because of the COVID virus,” Stover said.
“If you get a mail-in ballot you don’t have to use the postal service, you can use drop boxes. Counties have drop boxes and the metro area has lots of locations at https://faq.georgiavoter.guide/en/article/absentee-ballot-drop-box-locations and more information at https://www.georgiavoter.guide/,” Peter Followill, Indivisible GA 04, tells the Streets of Atlanta.
“This undermining of the postal service threatens the integrity of our election which goes to the heart of our democracy. The Supreme Court has long held that it is one person one vote and during a pandemic when so many people intend to vote by mail ,intentionally delaying mail, and slowing mail threatens that concept,” Followill said
DEMOCRATS FIGHT BACK AND SUE THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION
Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has sent a letter to Tammy Whitcomb, Inspector General of the U.S. Postal Service to conduct an audit and investigation of all these actions by DeJoy to prevent and detect fraud, waste, and misconduct.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and 192 Democrats sent a letter to Louis DeJoy asking him why he is implementing changes that have exacerbated a dramatic increase in delays and undelivered mail impacting mail delivery times and quality of service for Americans. These changes were made without consultation with Congress.
Link to Pelosi’s complete letter: https://www.speaker.gov/newsroom/81220-2
Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) and Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) urged the FBI to evaluate whether Postmaster General Louis DeJoy or Members of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Postal Service, committed any crimes in light of nationwide delays and issues with the United States Post Office.
HOW YOU CAN FIGHT BACK
Call your Senators who have failed to do anything about the post office crisis. They do respond to pressure so call Sen. David Perdue at 202-224-3521 and 404-865-0084 and Sen. Kelly Loeffler at 202-224-3643 and 770-661-0999. Tell them to fund the post office, fund the HEROES Act, and ask them to find your missing mail.
Call (202-268-2608), email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and write (475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW, Washington, D.C. 20260) Louis DeJoy, Postmaster General and demand that he resign to save the post office, democracy, to keep the general election from being rigged by him and Trump, and give him a piece of your mind.
Don’t be bullied or intimidated by Trump, vote early, mail your ballot early or drop it in a dropbox. This is the most important election ever to save democracy, if Trump wins everything will only get worse.
Absentee ballots begin mailing on 9/15/20, early voting begins 10/12/20 and ends 10/30/20. General Election is November 3, 2020.
by Gloria Tatum