Rep. Virginia Foxx defends embattled postmaster general
WASHINGTON — Postmaster General Louis DeJoy came under heavy fire Monday for withholding key information about delays in the delivery of mail since he took over the Postal Service just two months ago.
In a hearing before the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Democrats pressed DeJoy over an internal report made public over the weekend showing steep declines in on-time mail deliveries since July — challenging GOP claims that Democrats manufactured the crisis.
DeJoy did not share findings from the Aug. 12 report last week when senators asked for information about the delays in a Senate oversight hearing on the matter.
Nor did DeJoy share its findings in response to an Aug. 14 letter Democratic leaders sent him requesting information about the delays by Aug. 21, according to Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a New York Democrat who chairs the oversight panel.
The internal post office report “unfortunately” came from a separate source, she said. It was posted on the House Oversight website on Saturday.
There is “absolutely no excuse” for withholding the information, Maloney declared. She threatened to subpoena DeJoy if he does not deliver additional information lawmakers have requested by Wednesday.
The hearing came amid Democratic allegations that the Trump administration is trying to suppress votes during a pandemic in which the postal service will serve as “election central” because Americans will be reluctant to vote in person for fear of spreading infection.
In addition to undermining the integrity of the elections, the delays are depriving Americans of timely delivery of medicine, paychecks and other essentials, Democrats complained.
President Donald Trump told Fox News earlier this month that he opposes some funding for the Postal Service because he doesn’t want it used for mail-in votes, repeating his claim that it would lead to “fraudulent” results.
Rep. Gerald Connolly, a Virginia Democrat who chairs the panel’s subcommittee on government operations, said Monday that Democrats aimed to save the postal service and preserve “our democratic institutions.”
DeJoy has ushered in sweeping changes to the agency since taking the job 70 days ago but has called allegations that they were intended to sway the election results “outrageous.”
In testimony Monday, he said there were numerous reasons for delays and characterized them as a temporary service decline rather than a permanent change.
He said he remains “laser-focused” on addressing the delays but said he has no plans to replace mail processing machines that have already been removed — repeating what he said Friday in testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
Democrats questioned DeJoy’s honesty and motives, as well as the process by which he was appointed to the position. Read more