Attorney General Phil Weiser has joined 13 other states in filing a federal request for an injunction against the Trump Administration, seeking to prevent the U.S. Postal Service from making disruptive policy changes before the November election.
“We are fighting for an enforceable court order that ensures that the harm that has already occurred is corrected and prevents the Postmaster General from playing games with the mail service in the future,” Weiser said in a statement.
The legal filing in U.S. District Court for Eastern Washington alleges that the head of the Postal Service, Louis DeJoy, adopted multiple changes that violate the U.S. Constitution: requiring letter carriers to leave distribution centers at set times regardless of whether the mail is ready, prohibiting return trips and abandoning the “longstanding commitment” to treat mail ballots as First Class Mail.
The lawsuit argues these actions amount to voter disenfranchisement and interference with states’ ability to administer elections. The plaintiffs also contend that DeJoy never submitted the changes to the Postal Regulatory Commission per federal law.
“The acknowledged delays resulting from the ‘Leave Mail Behind’ policy, compounded with the effects of continued machine removals — and implemented without opportunity for public feedback — have already harmed Americans nationwide,” the brief states. “Combined with the lack of commitment to treat all Election Mail under First Class service standards, these impacts suggest that — unless the Postal Service changes course — it will not be able to ensure that critical mail is timely delivered or that every vote is counted in the upcoming election.”
In recent testimony before a U.S. House of Representatives committee, DeJoy said he did not plan to undo certain cost cutting measures, including the removal of streetside collection boxes and high-speed mail sorting machines, The Washington Post reported. The House has already passed a $25 billion relief bill for the Postal Service, but the U.S. Senate has not reciprocated.
“The United States Postal Service is fully capable and committed to delivering the nation’s ballots securely and on time,” the agency said in a statement to The Post about the request for an injunction.