ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ)– U.S. Senator Bob Casey, (D) Pennsylvania, spoke with our Jordan Tracy about his concerns over the funding of the United States Postal Service.
Last week, concerns began to rise over the funding and resources of the Postal Service after their officials sent a letter to 46 states saying that they were not going to be able to deliver mail-in ballots in time for election day. Democratic leaders in Congress have been pushing to add funding to the USPS in the next round of the CARES Act.
This week on Fox Business News, President Trump said he was against the additional funding claiming, “Now, if we don’t make a deal, that means they don’t get the money. That means they can’t have universal mail-in voting, they just can’t have it.” This has democratic leaders, including Sen. Casey, claiming that President Trump is holding up the funding in order to impact the 2020 election in his favor.
Sen. Casey said, “The concerns are when you combine the proposed changes that the Postmaster-General has begun to operate, you combine that with what the president said clearly to the world, that mail-in ballots aren’t good for him politically so he didn’t want to fund the agency that has to deliver the mail-in ballots, being the post office.”
Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said he will suspend the changes until after the election. In a media scrum on Wednesday, President Trump said he wants the Postal Service to “Run properly” but also not “Lose billions of dollars.” That hasn’t calmed any of Sen. Casey’s concerns.
He said, “A number of weeks have been transpired now where some of the changes have already begun to be implemented and we don’t know the adverse impact of that.”
The Senator continued, “I don’t like saying this, but I want to be honest with people. When the President of the United States says something, that he’s not trying to slow things down, I just don’t believe him. He just doesn’t have anywhere the degree of credibility that most presidents have earned over time. He hasn’t earned the trust of people when he makes a statement like that. Because he’s told, I don’t know how many, lies.”
The Washington Post and Wall Street Journal have both published editorials that refute the concerns of democratic leadership, both referring to them as conspiratorial. They cite the Postal Service’s $78 billion in losses since 2007 as long-standing issues that have occurred before the Trump Administration.
In response, Sen. Casey said, “I separate it into two issues. Number one is, there is a good debate to be had about congressional appropriations to the Postal Service over a number of years. If blame on that is bi-partisan, I’m willing to listen to those arguments.”
He continued, “I’d urge those editorial writers from any big newspaper to get in your car, go to Adams County, Pennsylvania. Not too far from Washington or New York. Drive to Lebanon County Pennsylvania. Drive to Wayne County, Pennsylvania, just by way of three examples of 15,000 we got and ask Kay and Ann and Michael in those counties whether or not what they told me in letters makes sense to those editorial writers. They are seeing a slow down in mail delivery that is effecting them getting prescription medication, just by way of one example.”
The Senator went on to say that he doesn’t believe that editorial writers nor President Trump understand the issues facing real people. On the president, Sen. Casey said, “He has spent most of his life in a fancy apartment or a condominium in New York City and now the White House. He has no idea what the Postal Service means to real people’s lives.”
The full interview with Senator Bob Casey can be seen in the video above.