US Democrats fight for US Postal Service funding

The US House of Representatives is to cut short its summer break to consider legislation to take on the US President’s stated aim of sabotaging postal voting through not funding the US Postal Service to the amount it needs.

The announcement came from Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who said she would call the House back to vote on legislation to block the US Postal Service changes that will disenfranchise US citizens casting postal votes in many cases.

Democratic state attorneys in the US have said that they are exploring legal action against the cutbacks. In addition, members of the Democrat Party have called on the Postmaster General to testify in an urgent Oversight Committee hearing on August 24 to examine his ‘sweeping operational and organisational changes at the Postal Service’ and their impact on postal voting. Over the weekend, Trump alleged that Democrats were to blame for the issues the cost-cutting measures could cause for the Postal Service amid the unprecedented influx of ballots.

Thanks to the pandemic, millions more Americans are set to vote by mail ahead of the Presidential Election on 3 November. The US Postal Service has made it plain that without a funding injection it will be unable to cope with the spike in demand. Donald Trump has however complained that there is evidence of widespread voter fraud in postal voting.

Barack Obama, speaking on a podcast with his former campaign manager David Plouffe also weighed in on the debate saying: “What we’ve seen in a way that is unique to modern political history is a president who is explicit in trying to discourage people from voting.

“What we’ve never seen before is a president say, “I’m going to try to actively kneecap the Postal Service . . . and I’ll be explicit about the reason I’m doing it.””

Obama later also stressed the importance of the USPS in delivering people’s medicine. “They can’t be collateral damage for an administration more concerned with suppressing the vote than suppressing a virus,” he tweeted.

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