Probe Begins of Postmaster's Changes at USPS

Trump defends postmaster general but says, 'I don't know what he's doing'
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2020 9:19 AM CDT
IG Digs Into Changes at USPS
Demonstrators protest changes to the Postal Service outside a post office in Midland, Michigan, on Tuesday.   (Katy Kildee/Midland Daily News via AP)

The Postal Service's inspector general is looking into the changes that have slowed delivery and led to warnings that states shouldn't count on mail-in ballots for the November election arriving in time. The changes are part of what Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has called a restructuring, CNN reports. In addition, overtime for employees has been cut, and high-speed letter sorters have been taken out of commission. Democrats, including former President Obama, have expressing alarm about the integrity of the election and called for DeJoy's changes to be rolled back. DeJoy has said financial problems and the pandemic necessitate them. The agency's watchdog stepped in after a request from Sen. Elizabeth Warren and others, per CNN.

President Trump defended his postmaster general on Saturday. "I don't know what he's doing, I can only tell you he is a very smart man," Trump said at a news conference in Bedminster, NJ, per the Hill. DeJoy is a major Republican donor who's new to government. "He is a fantastic man," the president said. "He wants to make the Post Office great again." DeJoy still owns at least $30 million in equity in a Postal Service contractor, and recently purchased for Amazon, a competitor. Trump said Democrats are to blame for the lack of Postal Service funding, tying it to negotiations for coronavirus relief legislation. To handle mail-in ballots, Trump said, the Postal Service is "going to obviously need funding, but the Democrats are not willing to provide funding for other things and therefore they are not going to get the funding for that." (More US Postal Service stories.)

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