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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Post Office Warns States about Risks, Delays Associated with Mass Mail-in Voting

'realistically consider how the mail works, and be mindful of our delivery standards...'

(Headline USA) The U.S. Postal Service is warning states coast to coast that it cannot guarantee all ballots cast by mail for the November election will arrive in time to be counted, even if mailed by state deadlines.

Voters and lawmakers in several states are also complaining that some curbside mail collection boxes are being removed.

Even as President Donald Trump rails against wide-scale voting by mail, the post office is bracing for an unprecedented number of mail-in ballots as a result of media-hyped fear and hysteria.

The warning letters sent to states raise the possibility that many Americans eligible for mail-in ballots this fall will not have them counted.

But that is not the intent, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said in his own letter to Democratic congressional leaders.

The post office is merely “asking elected officials and voters to realistically consider how the mail works, and be mindful of our delivery standards, in order to provide voters ample time to cast ballots through the mail,” wrote DeJoy.

Meanwhile, members of Congress from both parties have voiced concerns that curbside mail boxes, which is how many will cast their ballots, have abruptly been removed in some states.

At the same time that the need for timely delivery of the mail is peaking, service has been curtailed amid cost-cutting and efficiency measures ordered by the DeJoy, the new postmaster general, who is a former supply-chain CEO.

He has implemented measures to eliminate overtime pay and hold mail over if distribution centers are running late.

The federal watchdog of the Postal Service has opened an inquiry into operational changes at the agency that have delayed mail deliveries across the country, a spokeswoman said Friday.

That comes after Sen. Elizabeth Warren, of Massachusetts, and eight other Democrats sent a letter requesting a review.

The Post Office released copies of the warning letters it sent to all 50 states and the District of Columbia on its website.

While some states were given a less stringent warning, the majority were told the situation could be more dire.

The laws, the letter said, create a “risk that ballots requested near the deadline under state law will not be returned by mail in time to be counted.”

The mass mailing of the warning letters was first reported by The Washington Post.
Many state officials criticized the move.

Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press.

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