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Will Washington Paralyze The Postal Service?

by Countable | Updated on 4.10.18

What’s the story?

  • President Trump has recently taken to Twitter to accuse Amazon of taking advantage of the U.S. Postal Service, but it is Washington that is currently paralyzing the nation’s mail carrier.

  • The Postal Service’s governing board has been empty since December of 2016. As the Wall Street Journal puts it, "That means no one fills nine seats on a body akin to a corporate board of directors for an agency that is the largest civilian employer in the country after Walmart Inc."

  • The February board meeting was the first time the board has been without governors since its creation in 1970.

  • What does the governing board do? They advise on crisis management and congressional engagement. They propose and approve rate increases, hire and fire the postmaster general, and set policies that directly affect operations at big customers, such as mail-order catalog businesses.

  • Discounts for catalog mailers are set to expire soon, and there is no board to approve new ones. Those discounts are worth millions to some companies. If the discounts expire without Postal Service action it could lead to price increases for consumers to make up the difference.

  • Nominees to the board have to be approved by the Senate. The last round of nominees under President Obama never made it through confirmation before his second term ended. The Trump administration has nominated three potential governors who are reported to have bipartisan support, but the nominations have gotten sidelined by other, more high profile, nominations.

What do you think?

Should these nominations be prioritized, especially if bipartisan support would allow them to be advanced quickly? Should the viability and health of our national postal system be a congressional priority?

Tell us in the comments what you think, then use the Take Action button to tell your reps!

— Asha Sanaker

(Photo Credit: Wikipedia / Creative Commons)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(92)
  • Robert
    04/10/2018
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    Note to Congress: DO YOUR FUCKING JOB!!!

    Like (79)
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  • Gerald
    04/10/2018
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    The Republican agenda has for years been to privatize the mail system. The workers are unionized, they earn living wages, and generally vote Democratic. So, of course, they will crow loudly and sabotage at every opportunity to ensure its failure. I am sure there is corporate money pouring in to let Walmart or the Koch brothers take it over, make it minimum wage, deliver every other day, and just like privatizing prisons, we’ll see it go from the best in the world to the worst. Get them out of power before we can’t recognize America any more.

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  • RickEberhardt
    04/10/2018
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    This country needs a working and efficient postal service. To that end it needs a working board to help it run efficiently. The postal service also needs to be relieved of the requirement that they have to prepay health insurance and other retirement benefits that no other agency or company is required to pay ahead of time. Give USPS relief and it will turn a profit and not be a burden on the American people.

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  • Clay
    04/10/2018
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    The National Postal system should be a congressional priority. Fill the board seats now.

    Like (30)
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  • Maria
    04/11/2018
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    Republicans prove again and again that they cannot govern. A Senate of Republican majority fails to confirm USPS board again! They are in the pockets of corporations and have no business in public service! Vote them out this coming November!

    Like (18)
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  • Morgan
    04/10/2018
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    Wow !! Really ... isn’t amazon helping to supply money to the post office?? Amazon pays taxes on every state???

    Like (14)
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  • KansasTamale
    04/10/2018
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    This would not even be a problem if the Republicans had done their job and actually acted like real Congressmen during the last administration. Everyone of those men are White Supremacists- they wouldn’t ever do their real jobs and bus they don’t know haw & still don’t do their jobs. They are an abomination on our democracy and should all be voted out. The Post Office would be fine if they didn’t have to fork over the entire amount of retirement money for the workers instead of letting the investment of the money do its job. Leave it alone snd Stop Robbing The Post Office

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  • operaman
    04/11/2018
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    The government will regulate the USPS until they take their last gasp, then they will throw money at it trying to bring it back to life. If you want a business to work, keep socialism out of business decisions.

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  • Miguel
    04/12/2018
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    Everything that trump said regarding the postal service losing money is false.Actually amazon has given the postal service more revenue than ever before in there history...

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  • Marylynn
    04/11/2018
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    So, what else is new in D.C.? Nobody has been doing their jobs for quite some time. So what the hell are we paying them for? Oh yeah, that's right we're paying them so they can continue campaigning, while doing nothing else.

    Like (10)
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  • Dara
    04/10/2018
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    The postal service is a priority. The trump administration along with an incompetent congress need to make the postal service a priority NOW. Do your jobs. Fill the board positions.

    Like (9)
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  • RadicalModerate
    04/11/2018
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    Ultra Capitalist Extremists are running this country into the ground like its one of there disposable businesses. Trump and his GOP co-conspirators, they’ll take there money and run soon, leaving the rest of us to pay for their corruption.

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  • John
    04/12/2018
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    My grandfather, 2 uncles, and a brother- all- were mail carriers and clerks, and what Congress is doing to the U.S. Postal Service is unacceptable, the GOP are vultures and destroyers of everything that was great in this rotting nation of self-appointed thieves!

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  • Norm
    04/11/2018
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    Let’s keep our postal services viable and not farm it out to for profit organizations. It’s not unreasonable for the post office to pay for itself either. Don’t go to sleep folks.

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  • Esther
    04/11/2018
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    Washington will probably paralyze the country at the rate they’re going.

    Like (7)
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  • John
    04/11/2018
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    Support the USPS and stop trying to privatize it.

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  • Awassi
    04/10/2018
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    Without the Postal Service, there is little in the way of stopping UPS, FedEx, and other such companies from price gouging.

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  • David
    04/10/2018
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    Congress already has paralyzed the USPS and will make it worse until the Senate confirms the three people nominated to the USPS version of a Board of Directors. It does not use taxpayer dollars, is not allowed to lose money on it’s package delivery operations, and has to pay forward 75 years of expected liabilities in health and retirement programs. No other business has to do this but this is required, by Congress, of the USPS. Bottom line - Congress has already paralyzed the USPS.

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  • Carol
    04/11/2018
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    I am a retired Postal employee. It is a hard job with decent pay. It provides a decent living with good benefits. Back in 2006 Congress created a problem for the USPS. Prepayment of benefits for retirees way into the future. For employees not yet hired. There was one politician that would come into our office and would tell us that he was going to put us out of business. Why would he say that? We do not take a dime yet are governed by Congress and at their mercy when it comes to the budget. We are a big part of this country just like the public service employees such as yourselves.

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  • Anthony
    04/11/2018
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    I recall hearing a few years ago that there's an effort to privatize the postal service. Could this be related to that effort? 🤔

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