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Analysis

Fed. court reverses Post Office head DeJoy’s attack on voting rights, but is it too late?

This week a federal judge ruled to reverse the U.S. Postal Service’s decision to limit mail collections just days away from the presidential election.

In an attempt to further suppress the vote, the Trump-appointed Postmaster General Louis DeJoy had ordered postal workers to take less trips and curb late pick ups earlier in July. This policy resulted in mail back-ups across the country and massive public uproar. Other operational changes included a crackdown on overtime for employees and the closing and removal of hundreds of mail sorting machines.

The decision made by executives within USPS effectively stunted its capacity to fulfill its main function of delivering mail in a timely manner. The only rational explanation for such a move is that it was done as a political maneuver to assist Trump’s re-election effort by constructing yet another roadblock to voting remotely.

Appointed Postmaster General in May of 2020, Louis DeJoy completely lacks any qualifications for his job or basic experience at the postal service. DeJoy is however a committed Trump campaign donor who contributed over $1.2 million for the 2020 election alone. This was reason enough for his appointment to the critical role responsible for overseeing one of the largest federally run services in the country at a crucial moment in time. His swift actions in the few months of serving as Postmaster General has alarmed many as an unprecedented politicization of the USPS.

These recent policy changes to fundamentally alter the USPS is only the latest failed attempt in a long push made by right wing political operatives like DeJoy to fully dismantle the USPS as it exists. Proponents for the privatization of the Postal Service see the federally operated USPS and its largely unionized workforce as a threat. As petitions to save the Postal Service circulated on social media, the Trump administration has followed through on a longstanding plot to degrade the USPS to the point of obsolescence. The attempted privatization of the last of the few core public services that exist for the people of the United States is a harrowing confirmation of the ruling class’ incessant desire to extract profit from any avenue it can find.

The federal court ruling scraps the most egregious policies imposed by DeJoy and includes detailed orders about how the postal service must conduct itself in the run up to the election. But the earlier directives limiting mail service, coupled with years of intentional sabotage by politicians intent, have already taken their toll. The capitalist government of the United States has proven too incompetent to control to Coronavirus pandemic, but has certainly demonstrated its ability to take advantage of the chaos it has created to attack the right to vote.

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