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Duckworth urges Biden to oust entire Postal Service board

Sen. Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthHHS expands Medicaid postpartum coverage for Illinois mothers up to a year after giving birth Political disenfranchisement is fueling environmental injustice Tammy Duckworth pressures postal service board on firing DeJoy MORE (D-Ill.) on Friday urged President Biden to replace every member on the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) board of governors. 

In a letter, Duckworth specifically cited “recent and abject failure of leadership at the top of the USPS,” under Postmaster General Louis DeJoyLouis DeJoyTammy Duckworth pressures postal service board on firing DeJoy House Democrats introduce 'DeJoy Act' to block postal service changes Let's end the Postal Service political theater and create needed reforms MORE, a GOP fundraiser who attracted criticism last year after he implemented systemwide cost-cutting measures in the months leading up to the 2020 presidential election. 

The Illinois senator wrote Friday that “these incoherent and hastily rolled-out policy changes immediately led to widespread delivery delays and system-wide mail and parcel backlogs.”

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“Such bottlenecks put individuals like Veterans and older adults at risk of not receiving their lifesaving prescriptions on time; families at risk of missing their paychecks, utility bills, credit-card payments and court notices and hard-hit small businesses at risk of not receiving critical supplies for their customers on-time,” she added. 

DeJoy has come under criticism from Democrats repeatedly over his decisions in 2020, though the Postal Service has been credited for handling mail-in balloting well during the 2020 election amid worries a spike in such voting could lead to major delays in people getting ballots.

Over the Christmas season, however, the Postal Service struggled to handle a surge in package deliveries, leading to long delays. 

Biden has faced repeated calls to make changes to the board, which is currently made up of six appointees made by former President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden to move ahead with billion UAE weapons sale approved by Trump Fox News hires high-profile defense team in Dominion defamation lawsuit Associate indicted in Gaetz scandal cooperating with DOJ: report MORE, including two Democrats.

Duckworth then cited an October report in which the Postal Service Office of Inspector General determined that DeJoy implemented changes “‘quickly and communicated [them] primarily orally,’ creating confusion across operations within the USPS system” and did not conduct a study measuring the impact of the operational changes. 

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“These failures are inexcusable in any moment, but especially so in the midst of a pandemic and presidential election year where Americans increasingly needed to utilize mail-in ballots,” Duckworth continued. “It will take significant work to rebuild trust for this vital institution, and while Americans still celebrate their local letter carrier, they continue to have concerns about the individuals leading this agency.”

The senator argued that there “must be accountability for this failure in leadership” and thus called on Biden to “immediately replace the entire USPS Board of Governors.”

“I believe taking this step will begin the work of serving the public and rebuilding a robust, efficient and sustainable USPS for future generations,” the Democratic senator added. 

On Tuesday, Ron Bloom, a former Obama administration official, was elected chairman of the Postal Service board of governors. 

Bloom, a Democrat appointed by Trump who has served on the Postal Service board since 2019, said following his election that he would work with fellow governors and DeJoy on a 10-year-plan to revitalize the agency.