Attorney General James Stops Efforts To Dismantle The U.S. Postal Service (Updated: USPS Response)

New York Attorney General Letitia James today released the following statement after Judge Emmet G. Sullivan of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Judge Sullivan issued a decision permanently stopping Postmaster General Louis DeJoy from taking certain measures that would degrade mail service and further undermine the United States Postal Service (USPS).

“After he assumed leadership in June 2020, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy pushed through drastic changes to the U.S. Postal Service’s operations that slowed mail operations nationwide, harmed everyday Americans, and made a mockery of the right to vote. No one can act with impunity, and today the rule of law prevailed. My office will continue to defend New Yorkers — and Americans — against actions that slow essential services and threaten the integrity of our democracy.”

In August 2020, Attorney General James led the attorneys general of Hawaii and New Jersey, as well as the city of New York and the city and county of San Francisco in filing a lawsuit to stop the Trump Administration’s attempts to dismantle USPS.

The lawsuit argued that significant changes to USPS operations under DeJoy’s leadership substantially impacted USPS mail service in New York and nationwide and posed a threat to the integrity of the November 2020 presidential election.

Shortly after the lawsuit was filed, the court granted a preliminary injunction which immediately halted the Trump Administration’s attempts to disrupt USPS operations.

This matter was handled by former Assistant Attorney General Daniela Nogueira, former Special Counsel Morenike Fajana, former Senior Counsel Joseph Wardenski, and former Chief Counsel for Federal Initiatives Matthew Colangelo — all of the Executive Division; Assistant Attorney General Lindsay McKenzie and former Deputy Bureau Chief Elena Goldstein — both of the Civil Rights Bureau; Senior Counsel Michael Myers and Assistant Attorneys General Joshua Tallent and Laura Mirman-Heslin — all of the Environmental Protection Bureau; and Special Counsel Eric Haren of the Division for Appeals and Opinions.

The Civil Rights Bureau and the Environmental Protection Bureau are part of the Division for Social Justice, which is led by Chief Deputy Attorney General Meghan Faux.

Both the Executive Division and the Division for Social Justice are overseen by First Deputy Attorney General Jennifer Levy. 

Update:

On 10/7/2022 the U.S. Postal Service’s Sr. Public Relations Representative, Martha (Marti) Johnson responded with this email:

Saw your story linked here: https://www.harlemworldmagazine.com/attorney-general-james-stops-efforts-to-dismantle-the-u-s-postal-service/


Wanted to reach out to provide you with our statement on this:

Any suggestion that the Postal Service or anyone in Postal Service leadership, up to and including the Postmaster General, at any point in time was not fully committed to supporting our democratic process is inconsistent with the facts and our performance in 2020 and 2021.  

Here are those facts:

  • In 2020, 99.89% of ballots were delivered to election officials within 7 days (which was our minimum mailing time recommendation to voters). 97.9% of ballots arrived within three days. Returning ballots were delivered to election boards within 1.6 days.
  • In 2021, 99.95% of ballots were delivered to election officials within 7 days (which was our minimum mailing time recommendation to voters). 99.31% of ballots arrived within three days. On average, returning ballots were delivered to election boards within 1.4 days.

Between now and the November election, we remain highly focused on fulfilling our critical role as part of the country’s electoral system where election officials or voters choose to utilize us as a part of their process.  We continue to believe that the lawsuit was not justified under the facts or supported by the applicable law. We are studying the opinion to determine our appropriate next steps. Just as we always have been, the U.S. Postal Service remains fully committed to the secure, timely delivery of the nation’s Election Mail. 

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