Common Cause Demands Sen. McConnell Bring Senate Back from Recess and House Oversight Begin Investigation
(Washington, DC) — Common Cause calls on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to call the Senate back into session to pass new COVID-19 relief legislation containing at least $25 billion to shore up the United States Postal Service. With each day bringing new reports of suspicious changes to the Postal Service, Common Cause also calls on Congress to begin an investigation into these alarming and sudden changes resulting in systemwide slowdown of mail service, just as a global pandemic forces states to increase vote by mail and absentee voting options.
As President Trump attempts to create chaos and confusion surrounding every aspect of voting in this election, The Washington Post obtained a letter sent to election officials in 46 states saying that the Postal Service could not assure them or voters that ballots will be delivered before deadlines, possibly disenfranchising millions. In the letter from general counsel and executive vice president of the Postal Service, states were warned in late July, prior to Trump’s controversial appointment of Louis DeJoy as Postmaster General.
“With each new revelation, it appears Trump’s manipulation of the Postal Service is strategic and coordinated — a systematic attack on our most sacred right as free people – our vote. Congress must act now,” said Karen Hobert Flynn, president of Common Cause. “Seniors receiving social security checks, medicines, food, or care packages from distant family during COVID-19 is just one example of people harmed right now by these actions,” Hobert Flynn added.
“If people seeking public office, especially the presidency, don’t believe their track record or ideas can get them elected and instead resort to manipulation and vote suppression — preventing as many people as possible from voting, they might think twice about running,” Hobert Flynn said.
Common Cause calls on Congress to reconvene to:
- Pass a new COVID-19 relief package that provides $25 billion to strengthen the U.S. Postal Service, which was included in the House–passed HEROES Act in May
- Investigate the suspicious and sudden shifts in routing postal operations by new Postmaster General Dejoy, including dramatic cuts to the workforce and the de-commissioning of ten percent of its bulk sorting machines, about 671 machines nationwide that are already causing a slowdown throughout USPS
- Pass new legislation to:
- End the hiring freeze at USPS so many people can get back to work
- End the overtime cap for USPS employees
- Reinstate “late and extra trips” that allow carriers to catch-up on backlogged deliveries
- End the sudden, suspicious, and disruption operational changes put in place by DeJoy, a logistics expert who must have known the problems these changes would bring about