The U.S. Postal Service removed mail collection boxes in at least four states and is eliminating automatic letter-sorting machines that speed delivery ahead of an expected surge of mail-in ballots in the Nov. 3 elections.
As the Postal Service began to dismantle its own process for speedy mail delivery, it sent a letter to 46 states warning that voters could be disenfranchised because their mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to make vote deadlines, The Washington Post reported Friday. Some states are quickly moving up deadlines, forcing voters to request or cast ballots sooner.
The startling actions appear to support accusations by Democratic lawmakers and voting rights groups that Postal Service management — now headed by major Donald Trump contributor Louis DeJoy — is sabotaging mail delivery before Election Day.
The USPS has removed mailboxes in Oregon, Montana, Indiana and in Manhattan. Trucks filled with the blue metal boxes alarmed Oregon residents in Portland, where four were removed, and Eugene (28 boxes) this week. A USPS spokesperson said they’re being removed because of “declining” mail volume, The Oregonian reported Thursday.
Donald Trump isn’t *trying* to sabotage our elections. He’s doing it right under our noses. This is voter suppression and Senate Republicans are letting him get away with it. https://t.co/scsuKQIRAG
— Ron Wyden (@RonWyden) August 14, 2020
Delivery times have doubled. Costs are increasing. Sorting machines are being removed. Mail is piling up. Now they’re driving around in trucks, removing mailboxes.
Leave it to Trump to quickly destroy an institution that’s been around longer than America has existed. pic.twitter.com/WSMCB6BQyE
— Ted (@trom771) August 14, 2020
The agency planned to remove 68 of the collection boxes in Montana, but the operation was placed “on hold” as of Friday after dozens were taken, following a report by a local NBC station and a complaint by Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.). The USPS later issued a statement that it would stop removing letter boxes in 16 states and sections of two others in the western region of the agency until after the election, CNN reported.