I’ve heard a lot from constituents about the U.S. Postal Service this week. Many are scared and nervous that President Donald Trump and Republicans are trying to sabotage the USPS in order to win this election. This could not be further from the truth.
First, Republicans support fair and honest elections. To suggest otherwise is simply offensive. But Democrats and Republicans clearly do not agree on what could possibly threaten a fair and honest election in 2020. In this debate, we need to start with the difference between universal mail-in ballots and absentee ballots.
People should understand that when we talk about mail-in ballots, that is referring to the fact that Democrats want each state to mail out a ballot to every registered voter, whether they have requested them or not. Absentee voting, on the other hand, is something Republicans have always supported, dating back to the Civil War. Voting is a right and a privilege as a U.S. citizen, but like anything in our great country, it requires involvement. To vote absentee, you must be current on your voter registration, and you must request an absentee ballot, just as you would if you were to show up to a polling location on Nov. 3. This is how we vote in America, and this is how we ensure that our elections are fair and honest. Republicans support absentee voting by mail, but we do not support sending a ballot to every person that registered to vote. A person does not have to consider very long the enormous potential for fraud that exists by mailing every registered voter a ballot — what safeguards are in place to stop a resident from filling out a ballot that arrived for a previous tenant? Or for their sick neighbor? Or for a recently deceased family member? What is stopping someone from filling out a mail-in ballot only to go vote again in person?
Democrats are also trying to confuse the American public by suggesting that Republicans are blocking needed funding for the Postal Service to properly process and deliver absentee ballots — not true. Historically, the Postal Service has received less than $55 million in annual federal funding. Democrats are requesting an infusion of $25 billion, with little explanation for what this money would actually be spent on.
Finally, Democrats are misleading the American public about removing blue mailboxes due to the upcoming election. Again, not true. The Postal Service regularly moves mailboxes due to growth and demand. However, due to this false alarm they set off, the postmaster general reaffirmed that “mail processing equipment and blue collection boxes will remain where they are” until after the election, which ironically could lead to the very issue that Democrats are claiming to try to prevent — resulting in the Post Office from operating less efficiently and effectively than they otherwise could by relocating mailboxes or other equipment due to higher demand in certain areas.
The bill that the House will vote on this week is just Speaker Nancy Pelosi doubling down on Democratic fear mongering. In addition to the $25 billion — which the Postal Service does not claim to need — it prohibits the Postal Service from making any operational changes that would impact service standards or service performance. This is an independent agency, and this kind of Congressional overreach is inappropriate and potentially harmful. It also includes a cause of action for any violation of the spirit of the legislation, which we all know would be most trial lawyers’ dream. We can and should have a discussion with the Postal Service on what its needs are to ensure a fair and honest election. Republicans are ready and willing to do that. This bill is not a serious attempt at solving an issue. It’s yet another political stunt to distract from the failure of the Democratic party to convince the American people that they should be entrusted with their votes.
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