After weeks of increasing political furor over recent cuts at the US Postal Service, President Donald Trump on Monday said he would not support agency cuts.
“We’re taking good care of our postal workers. That I can tell you,” the President said on the first night of the Republican National Convention. “Believe me, we’re not getting rid of any our postal workers, you know.” He went on to claim, “If anyone does it’s the Democrats, not the Republicans.”
Facts first: This is false. Internal USPS documents obtained by CNN contradict the President’s statement. Before Postmaster General Louis DeJoy suspended many changes until after the election, the USPS was planning to drastically cut work hours in at least one district. Also, Democrats have not proposed laying off postal workers.
In documents obtained by CNN, USPS managers held a “stand up talk,” around July 13, telling workers they would be cutting roughly 100,000 to 124,000 work hours across the district, in all sectors — retail, delivery and processing. It was unclear how management would be implementing the changes. The USPS planned on cutting so many work hours in mail processing operations — 124,000 — the documents say it would be the equivalent of closing all processing plants in the Appalachian district for 29 days or eliminate an entire shift of workers for 86 days.
Delivery in urban areas would be reduced by 110,983 work hours. The documents equated the work hour cuts to: not delivering mail for 13 days, or stopping 43 city routes, or ending mail delivery by 25 minutes every day.
It also included clerk and retail operations, which management was going to cut by 112,475 work hours. That’s the equivalent of shutting post office retail operations for 90 days, district wide, according to the documents.
The initiative to cut work hours has since stopped because DeJoy paused them after intense public scrutiny. But union officials CNN has spoken to fear the changes will be brought back after the 2020 election.
They also are concerned because past work hour cuts have led to job cuts.
In his congressional testimony, DeJoy alluded that significant changes are still coming to the USPS, they’re just coming after the election now.
DeJoy operates independently of the President, but has significant ties to him as a mega-donor and the former finance chair for the Republican National Committee. In recent weeks, the President has pushed baseless accusations that sought to undermine trust in the USPS and has said he opposed funding the USPS because of mail-in voting.