Meadows says postmaster general did not discuss pausing changes with Trump
Postmaster General Louis DeJoy did not consult with President Trump before pausing changes to U.S. Postal Services operations, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told reporters.
“The postmaster general did that on his own,” Meadows said after DeJoy announced on Tuesday that any operational changes would be halted until after the November elections.
“That was an independent decision that was made by the postmaster general and the board of governors … and really it’s more from an appearance standpoint more than anything else,” he added.
Meadows further clarified that DeJoy and Trump had not spoken about the announcement. But Meadows indicated to reporters on Air Force One late Tuesday that he was personally aware the pause was coming, based on an earlier conversation.
The postmaster general on Tuesday said he would pause changes to Postal Service operations until after the election amid bipartisan outcry, a sharp reversal after Trump spent days defending DeJoy’s actions.
DeJoy said retail hours at post offices would remain unchanged, mail processing equipment and collection boxes would not be removed and no mail processing facilities would be closed.
“To avoid even the appearance of any impact on election mail, I am suspending these initiatives until after the election is concluded,” DeJoy said in a statement.
DeJoy’s announcement comes as his leadership of the Postal Service has come under withering scrutiny from lawmakers in both parties who have voiced concerns about mail delays and changes at the agency. The timing of the changes drew backlash, given voters are expected to heavily rely on mail-in ballots this November due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But DeJoy on Tuesday made clear he intended to pursue the changes in operations once the election has passed.
“I came to the Postal Service to make changes to secure the success of this organization and its long-term sustainability,” he said. “I believe significant reforms are essential to that objective, and work toward those reforms will commence after the election.”