Senate Democrat calls for end of recess amid warning about mail-in ballot delays

Sen. Catherine Cortez MastoCatherine Marie Cortez MastoWestern US airports face jet fuel shortage Overnight Energy: Senate panel advances controversial public lands nominee | Nevada Democrat introduces bill requiring feds to develop fire management plan | NJ requiring public water systems to replace lead pipes in 10 years Nevada Democrat introduces bill requiring feds to develop fire management plan MORE (D-Nev.), the chairwoman of Senate Democrats’ campaign arm, called for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGrassley pressured to run as Democrats set sights on Iowa House Democrats grow frustrated as they feel ignored by Senate Democrats question GOP shift on vaccines MORE (R-Ky.) to cut the August recess short over warnings that mail-in ballots this November may not arrive in time for the election.

Cortez Masto, who heads the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC), cited a warning from the United States Postal Services (USPS) about "inconsistencies" between its delivery service and state deadlines for receiving and counting mail-in ballots ahead of an anticipated spike in mail-in voting this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s unacceptable that in the United States of America, the Postal Service has to warn Americans that their ballots may not be counted if they vote by mail,” Cortez Masto said in a statement released by the DSCC. “Mitch McConnell should end recess, return to Washington, and work to pass the bipartisan emergency funding needed to provide urgent economic relief, combat this pandemic, and ensure the Postal Service can operate in a safe and timely manner.” 

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The call from Cortez Masto comes amid a flood of warnings from Democrats that changes implemented under USPS Postmaster General Louis DeJoyLouis DeJoyFBI investigating political fundraising of former employees of Postmaster General DeJoy Postal Service raises stamps to 58 cents as part of restructuring plan Lawmakers request investigation into Postal Service's covert operations program MORE will impact delivery times and possibly hinder the timely delivery of mail-in ballots later this year. 

Among the changes he’s implemented are adjusting delivery policies and reassigning the pair of officials in charge of day-to-day operations. 

Democrats have asked for $25 billion in emergency funding as part of the next COVID-19 relief package to boost the the USPS’s capabilities, but President TrumpDonald TrumpRonny Jackson, former White House doctor, predicts Biden will resign McCarthy: Pelosi appointing members of Jan. 6 panel who share 'pre-conceived narrative' Kinzinger denounces 'lies and conspiracy theories' while accepting spot on Jan. 6 panel MORE has rebuffed them, saying Thursday he was opposed to USPS funding because it would help universal mail-in voting this fall.

He said Friday he would be willing to approve billions of dollars in funding for the USPS as part of a coronavirus relief package if Democrats make concessions on certain White House priorities. 

“Republicans in the Senate have failed Americans by refusing to stand up to the president’s political attacks that are putting the election at risk while also delaying the delivery of prescription drugs, Social Security checks, and other essentials,” said Cortez Masto.