Speaker Nancy Pelosi told Democrats tonight that the House will be called back from August recess to act to “save the Postal Service.”
Democratic lawmakers say they have been inundated with complaints about policy changes by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy that are disrupting the USPS ahead of an election that will see a record number of mail-in ballots.
DeJoy is a former fundraiser for President Trump.
In a “Dear Democratic Colleague” letter, Pelosi said: “Alarmingly, across the nation, we see the devastating effects of the President’s campaign to sabotage the election by manipulating the Postal Service to disenfranchise voters.”
Democrats say constituents are furious about news of the removal of high-speed sorting machines, unbolting of corner mailboxes, and a Postal Service warning to state that ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted.
Democrats plan to keep the issue highly visible, even before the unusual interruption of their time at home in the run-up to the election.”
“To save the Postal Service,” Pelosi wrote, “I am also calling upon Members to participate in a Day of Action on Tuesday by appearing at a Post Office in their districts for a press event.”
The likely plan is for the House to travel back to Washington on Friday and convene on Saturday.
House Democratic Leader Steny Hoyer is expected to announce the schedule on a members-only conference call with House Democrats on Monday at 11:30 a.m.
The expected starting point for action will be a measure introduced by House Oversight Chair Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), “Delivering for America Act,” which “would prohibit the Postal Service from dialing back levels of service it had in place” on Jan. 1, until the pandemic ends.
Senate Minority Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) also issued a statement Sunday evening demanding that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) reconvene the Senate.
Trump said this weekend DeJoy “wants to make the post office great again.”
Top Democrats in the House and Senate called today for DeJoy to testify at an “urgent” hearing before the House Oversight Committee on Aug. 24.
Ahead of the hearing, the Democrats are demanding DeJoy produce a “host of key documents and information” related to the USPS crisis by Aug. 21.
They are also urging the Republican-led Senate Homeland Security Committee to “immediately begin vigorous and urgently-needed oversight” by holding hearings with DeJoy and the chairman of the USPS board of governors.
“The President has explicitly stated his intention to manipulate the Postal Service to deny eligible voters access to the ballot in pursuit of his own re-election,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, House Oversight chair Carolyn Maloney and Senate Homeland Security ranking member Gary Peters said in a statement Sunday.
“Alarmingly, the Postmaster General – a Trump mega-donor – has acted as an accomplice in the President’s campaign to cheat in the election, as he launches sweeping new operational changes that degrade delivery standards and delay the mail.”
“The Postal Service itself has warned that voters – even if they send in their ballots by state deadlines – may be disenfranchised in 46 states and in Washington, D.C. by continued delays. This constitutes a grave threat to the integrity of the election and to our very democracy.”