Recently, I wrote about how Trump is trying to influence our elections using false information about mail in ballots. You can read the post here. Well, more information has surfaced recently. Trump has spoken about cutting funding to the postal service and this has been getting far more press recently. These reports are citing comments Trump made regarding a new bill for postal service funding.
A new bill, sponsored by Congresswoman Maloney (D-NY) would require the Postal Service to operate as it did on January 1, 2020. So any changes Trump has made to slow down mail-in ballots would be completely reversed. As a reference, some of the changes Trump’s administration has been forcing on the Postal Service include a reduction in overtime hours, a halting of hiring at senior levels, and attempts to remove post office machinery, such as mail sorting machines. If passed, this bill will reverse all of the restraints on the Postal Service allowing it to once again run smoothly. This bill, named the ‘Delivering for America Act’, would also give the Postal Service $25 billion in funding. The extra $25 billion could be used to give overtime workers raises in order to speed up delivery, and would encourage the service to return to its normal speed.
In short, this bill would make mail in voting significantly more efficient. As I warned in a previous article, because Trump has hurt the Postal Service’s ability to do its job, thousands of mail in ballots may not be counted. But, if this bill passes then the Postal Service will no longer have these harmful restrictions in place. And, the Postal Service will get a much needed boost in funding.
The bill had hearing and was voted upon on Saturday, August 22nd. This is obviously very short notice and a surprising for Congress to return during August, which is normally a sort of vacation time. But as many democratic representatives have been explaining, this is an emergency situation. The bill has to be voted on as quickly as possible if the postal service is meant to reverse the changes made. So what’s the issue?
Well, as I mentioned above, Trump has been aggressively opposing this bill’s passing. In fact on August 13, Trump openly admitted that he would block funding to the postal service in order to stop mail in votes.
“If we don’t make a deal, that means they don’t get the money. That means they can’t have universal mail-in voting. They just can’t have it.”
President Trump has the ability to veto this bill even if it is passed in the house and the senate. If he does, we will once again be stuck at ground zero in terms of the Postal Service’s efficiency.
But Nancy Pelosi, who is Speaker of the House, reported that Trump’s threats to veto funding is not true to the real negotiations that are happening.
“What [negotiators] are saying is different than what the president is saying. If they came in the room and said the president is never doing this, that’s something we’d take to the American people. And the American people want the Postal Service protected and preserved.”
Nancy Pelosi is, unlike Trump, in the thick of the negotiations happening in the Senate. While Trump likes to boast and spread rumors, he isn’t in the House of Representatives and isn’t participating in the creation, hearing, and voting of this bill. So Nancy Pelosi has a better understanding of the whether or not this bill, and the funding included, will pass or not.
As it stands, we cannot be sure how effective our socially distant election will be. If the Postal Service gets funding and has their restrictions lifted, we can rest more assured that our votes will be counted. But if this bill doesn’t pass or is vetoed by Trump, we need to make sure we’re taking every chance to mail in votes early — and I mean weeks early.
About the Author:
After being subjected to homophobic harassment in the classroom, Isabella decided to try and use her writing to encourage others to stand up for each other and themselves. Isabella is a high school student in Lafayette, IN.