There was progress yesterday in the effort to remove Greensboro’s Louis DeJoy from his position as U.S. Postmaster General. As several media outlets — including the New York Times have reported, President Biden has nominated three new members to the Postal Service board of governors. It’s hoped and expected by the legions of DeJoy critics that this move will shift the balance of power on the board and enable it to find a new leader.
DeJoy, of course, is an arch-conservative businessman and Trump supporter (and husband of former North Carolina HHS secretary Aldona Wos) who has come under fire for numerous moves that have been seen to undermine the USPS. This is from the Times report:
The Postal Service catapulted to the national spotlight last summer amid nationwide slowdowns that coincided with operational changes instituted by Mr. DeJoy, raising fears ahead of the election about vote-by-mail delays. Democrats accused Mr. DeJoy, a supporter of President Donald J. Trump, of trying to undercut mail balloting at a time when Mr. Trump was also promoting a false narrative that it was rife with fraud.
But Mr. DeJoy has also drawn fire for continued delivery problems since the election, as the Postal Service struggles to find a sounder financial footing.
Let’s hope the new Biden appointees are seated quickly and take swift action. As columnist Paul Waldman writes in the Washington Post this morning:
To refresh your memory, DeJoy, a Republican mega-donor with no experience in the USPS, was appointed to lead the agency in the spring of 2020, despite having been beset by allegations of abusive practices at his business, conflicts of interest and potential campaign finance law violations. This came after President Donald Trump had spent years attacking the Postal Service.
DeJoy quickly took steps, supposedly in the service of cost-cutting, that had the effect of slowing down mail delivery. You probably noticed it.
After exploring the competing views of DeJoy’s actions and noting that here is bipartisan agreement regarding the need to upgrade the Postal Service, Waldman puts it this way:
“Although there does exist a progressive agenda with regard to the Postal Service (including the revival of postal banking) that Republicans will oppose, a well-functioning USPS that provides efficient service at affordable costs is something almost everyone agrees on. And it’s obvious that DeJoy is a polarizing figure whose continued leadership of the agency is going to only make everything harder.
So surely there are other experienced and qualified candidates out there who aren’t party donors and who could do a better job of reviving the USPS without being partisan lightning rods. If the Biden administration engineers it so DeJoy is replaced with someone like that, everyone ought to be happy.