USPS Announces Joint Task Force to Ease Election Day Concerns: ‘We’re Ready for It’

Postal workers sort, load and deliver mails as protesters hold a "Save the Post Office" demonstration outside a United States Postal Service location in Los Angeles, California, on August 22, 2020. - Postmaster General Louis DeJoy on August 21 denied claims he was working to undermine mail delivery, after comments …
KYLE GRILLOT/AFP via Getty

Louis DeJoy, Postmaster General and CEO of the United States Postal Service (USPS), announced the creation of a joint task force with postal unions, which he said will “enhance” their work with election officials ahead of November’s election.

“I am pleased to announce that the presidents of the four postal unions have agreed to work with the postal service on a joint-leadership task force,” DeJoy announced in a video aimed to ease concerns over mail-in voting and Election Day.

DeJoy said the new partnership, which includes Fredric V. Rolando, President of the National Association of Letter Carriers;  Ronnie W. Stutts, President of the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association; Mark Dimondstein, President of the American Postal Workers Union; and Paul V. Hogrogian, President of the National Postal Mail Handlers Union, will effectively “enhance” USPS’s work with election officials and jurisdictions across the nation.

“We will address issues related to voter education and best practices of the stakeholders in administrating mail-in voting for the 2020 election,” he said, noting the impact the Chinese coronavirus has had this year. Nevertheless, USPS is working to “ensure that we fulfill our role in the electoral process and maintain the trust of the American public.”

Rolando said workers are “fully committed” to ensuring that ballots and election mail will be delivered “securely, accurately, and on time,” while Dimondstein assured that USPS “has the ability to process and deliver the high volumes of election mail expected in the coming weeks.”

“The American public can count on the postal service to deliver this year’s election mail,” Hogrogian added.

DeJoy noted many states and localities are expanding options for mail-in voting and said USPS is working to provide resources for voters so they can make informed decisions ahead of Election Day. He also asked voters to remain mindful of their state election rules and to request and return their ballots as early as possible.

“We want to be sure that when you use the mail to vote, your vote will be counted,” he said.

“The volume of election mail may be higher this year, but we’re ready for it,” DeJoy continued, adding Americans can have “great confidence in the 630,000 men and women of the United States Postal Service and in our ability to deliver America’s election mail.”

USPS also stressed the importance of voters being aware of their state’s vote-by-mail deadlines on its website.

“If you choose to vote by mail, it’s your responsibility to understand your local jurisdiction’s requirements for timely submission of completed mail-in ballots, including postmarking requirements,” USPS stressed:

You should also be aware of how long it may take for your ballot to travel through the mail. Some state deadlines may not provide enough time for the Postal Service to deliver a mail-in ballot from the election office to the voter and return the marked ballot from the voter to the election office based on the established time it takes to deliver different types of mail — which is called our “delivery standards,” and which have been in place for many years. Failing to follow the Postal Service’s recommendations will increase the risk that your ballot will not be delivered and returned in time to be counted. Contact your local election officials about ballot submission deadlines and other information that will help ensure your vote is counted.

DeJoy’s announcement comes on the heels of last month’s testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, where he assured lawmakers that he remained “extremely, highly confident” that USPS will be able to deliver mail-in ballots in a timely manner. The testimony followed a surge of outrage after USPS warned several states that it may not be able to deliver ballots in a timely manner due to their respective deadlines. High profile Democrats quickly accused DeJoy, Trump, and Republicans in engaging in a scheme to rig the election — an accusation DeJoy adamantly denied.

“There has been no changes to any policies with regard to election mail,” he told the Senate panel last month.

While it is true that the financially-strained institution is slated to undergo operational changes, DeJoy said those will not occur until after the presidential election to “avoid even the appearance of any impact on election mail.”

A New York Times analysis revealed three-quarters of Americans will be permitted to vote by mail in the upcoming election due to changes, state by state, spurred by the Chinese coronavirus pandemic.

Mass vote-by-mail, however, has remained a long-desired political objective of the Democrat Party.

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