- President Donald Trump has tapped Louis DeJoy, a top donor and Republican National Committee fundraiser, to be postmaster general, The Washington Post reported.
- Trump has railed against the Postal Service for years for not hiking up prices for retailers who use USPS. His ire has been targeted, in particular, towards Amazon, whose CEO, Jeff Bezos, also owns The Washington Post.
- The president frequently derides The Post as being “fake news” and has nicknamed it the “Amazon Washington Post.”
- Trump has been trying to force the USPS to raise shipping prices for online retailers like Amazon for years, and he’s currently refusing to release urgently needed funding that was approved by Congress to bail out the agency unless it agrees to his demands.
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President Donald Trump has tapped Louis DeJoy, a top donor to Trump and the Republican National Committee, to lead the embattled US Postal Service, The Washington Post reported.
“Louis DeJoy understands the critical public service role of the United States Postal Service, and the urgent need to strengthen it for future generations,” Robert Duncan, chairman of the board of governors, told The Post in a statement. “Postal workers are the heart and soul of this institution, and I will be honored to work alongside them and their unions.”
DeJoy, a North Carolina businessman who is in charge of fundraising for the RNC in Charlotte, will take over as postmaster general on June 15. His perch atop the USPS and coziness with Trump will also likely facilitate the president’s efforts to get the agency to hike its shipping rates for Amazon and other online retailers.
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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos also owns The Post, which Trump often derides as “fake news” and calls “the Amazon Washington Post.”
Trump said last month that he would block congressionally approved funding for the agency unless it quadrupled its shipping delivery prices for online retailers. The emergency funding would come as part of a $10 billion line of credit that Congress approved when it passed a coronavirus stimulus package in March.
“The Postal Service is a joke,” Trump told reporters in April. “The post office should raise the price of a package by approximately four times” in order to get the funding, he added.
Though the president has criticized the US Postal Service for years, The Post reported in 2018 that his demands were targeted to hurt Amazon in particular. As part of that effort, Trump personally spoke to Megan Brennan, the postmaster general at the time, to push the agency to raise delivery prices for Amazon and other online retailers.
Brennan reportedly resisted the president’s demands and explained to him that the agency’s partnership with Amazon was beneficial for the government, but Trump was unmoved.
The USPS has been struggling financially for years, and more so under the weight of Trump’s demands, but the agency is facing an unprecedented crisis as the novel coronavirus surges through the US, costing tens of thousands of lives and decimating the economy.
In March, several lawmakers warned that the agency could run out of money as soon as next month and that as a result, critical supplies could be stuck, mail voting in the November election could be stymied, and hundreds of thousands of postal employees could be out of work.
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“Based on a number of briefings and warnings this week about a critical fall-off in mail across the country, it has become clear that the Postal Service will not survive the summer without immediate help from Congress and the White House,” Reps. Carolyn Maloney and Gerry Connolly said in a joint statement.
Connolly, the chairman of the House subcommittee that oversees the Postal Service, excoriated DeJoy’s selection, telling The Post that the agency “is in crisis and needs real leadership and someone with knowledge of the issues. This crony doesn’t cut it.”
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