Top Democrats say postmaster confirmed changes to mail service amid delays

Top Congressional Democrats said on Thursday that the postmaster general confirmed in a closed-door meeting this week that he had instituted operational changes, and are urging him to change course amid reports of delays. 

House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi preparing for House to decide presidency if neither Trump or Biden win electoral college: report Trump seeks boost from seniors with 0 drug discount coupons GOP senators confident Trump pick to be confirmed by November MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats blast Trump after report reveals he avoided income taxes for 10 years: 'Disgusting' Biden refuses to say whether he would support expanding Supreme Court Schumer says Trump tweet shows court pick meant to kill off ObamaCare MORE (D-N.Y.) noted in a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy that he confirmed during a meeting with them that “the Postal Service recently instituted operational changes shortly after you assumed the position of Postmaster General.”

“These changes include reductions of overtime availability, restrictions on extra mail transportation trips, testing of new mail sorting and delivery policies at hundreds of Post Offices, and the reduction of the number and use of processing equipment at mail processing plants,” they added.

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The letter comes after Pelosi, Schumer, White House chief of staff Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsSunday Shows: Trump's court pick dominates Former Homeland Security Secretary Johnson: 'Disconcerting' to see Trump, Meadows cast doubt on election security Meadows: 'There are different degrees of confidence' in FBI director MORE and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinHouseholds, businesses fall into financial holes as COVID aid dries up Centrist Democrats got their COVID bill, now they want a vote The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Republicans lawmakers rebuke Trump on election MORE met with DelJoy on Wednesday as part of their negotiations over a fifth coronavirus deal. Democrats want more money for USPS over concerns that they will be swamped by a spike of absentee ballots in November.

Schumer and Pelosi are urging DeJoy to reverse the changes, arguing that they undermine the timely delivery of things like mail, medicine and absentee ballots.

“In this moment, Americans have turned to the Postal Service and depend on it for the timely delivery of critical goods and a safe alternative to in-person interactions. As a result, we believe these changes must be reversed,” they added.

The two Democratic lawmakers also want an analysis on the impact of the recent changes, including how it effects delivery time and serviced.

David Partenheimer, a spokesman for the Postal Service, confirmed that they had received the letter but said they would be responding directly to Democrats. Partenheimer separately denied to the Associated Press USPS is slowing down deliveries.

"We continue to employ a robust and proven process to ensure proper handling of all election mail consistent with our standards,″ he told the AP.

 In addition to the letter from the two top Democrats, Sen. Gary PetersGary Charles PetersHillicon Valley: Subpoenas for Facebook, Google and Twitter on the cards | Wray rebuffs mail-in voting conspiracies | Reps. raise mass surveillance concerns Postmaster general says postal service can't return mail-sorting machines The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump faces backlash after not committing to peaceful transition of power MORE (D-Mich.), the top Democrat on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, announced on Thursday that he was starting an investigation into delivery delays.