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Judge Orders U.S. Postal Special Measures Election Mail



As the last-minute battle in swing states such as Pennsylvania and Minnesota continues before the deadline for counting mail votes, a federal judge issued a severe order on Friday to require the United States to strengthen the monitoring of on-time election mail delivery and performance postal services. .

U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan for the District of Columbia ordered the postal regulatory agency to implement “special measures” to improve the delayed mail delivery time in 22 postal areas in a dozen states.

Sullivan also asked the USPS to immediately start providing the latest data on election mail, and clarify any circumstances where the on-time delivery rate is less than 90%.

According to the order, the USPS is also required to provide the court with a representative who can “discuss and answer questions about the postal service̵

7;s current plans and procedures related to the processing of election mail.”

Before the order was issued, USPS released data to the court showing that the struggle to deliver mail on time in 10 states has become increasingly fierce. However, the agency denied in court that any “additional relief is necessary” to ensure that votes can be delivered on time.

At the status hearing on Friday afternoon, when asked whether the post office can handle the change procedures after the game, the office’s executive vice president Kristin Seaver said: “The train has left the station and we are very concerned about the implementation. plan.”

She continued: “When you have to deal with 30,000 units, more than 400,000 employees, and five collective bargaining unit agreements, this is an important task.” “The team focuses on executing the plan-if we do well, we It will provide good services to the American people. It is a high risk for us to speak out on this point.”

Sullivan said at Friday’s hearing that the court was overwhelmed by voicemails sent by people who had issues with certain mail delays, including emails citing viral videos of apparently abandoned mail at a Miami-Dade County post office. Sever said the agency is currently investigating the issue, and anyone who sees a potential problem with the election mail should call the postal hotline. The Office of the Inspector General of the Post Office is also handling complaints.

Since August, in a federal court in Washington, D.C., people have been concerned about the USPS’s ability to handle the influx of election mail during the pandemic. At that time, voting supporters filed a lawsuit claiming that the postmaster Louis DeJoy initiated the lawsuit. In response to the procedure change, a Trump-appointed person threatened the agency’s ability to deliver votes on time.

Although DeJoy stated that these cost-cutting measures were suspended during election day, the post office’s performance is still struggling under the pressure of understaffing, large package volume and political mail congestion.

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This is particularly worrying for voters in Minnesota and other states. The court ruled on Thursday that votes received after November 3 may not be counted, which may mean certain votes that have already been sent in the mail. Will not be able to arrive in time and be put aside, invalid.

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh made a similar order for Wisconsin mail voting earlier this week, and he refused to extend the deadline for voting. However, the court upheld the extension of the deadlines in Pennsylvania and North Carolina.

The United States Postal Service (USPS) warned most states this summer that ballots should be sent within a week before Election Day, which is now only four days away. Election analysts say it is too late to vote by mail in most places. They recommend that those who have mailed ballots use the ballot box, deliver it to the polling station, or vote in person.

At Friday’s hearing, Sever wasn’t sure to say whether she agreed with this assessment, but she did say that delivering the ballots on time is the agency’s top priority.

“Someone asked a question,’What are you nervous about? We stared at them and said: “We are nervous about everything! We want to do everything right. We hope to properly handle and deliver all the ballot papers from the postal department in time. “You are in the game.” You must play the game and run the game. You must have confidence in the team and they will go all out. “




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