Congress Pauses Summer Vacation to Try and Do Something to Fix…Uh…………Everything?

Illustration for article titled Congress Pauses Summer Vacation to Try and Do Something to Fix…Uh…………Everything?
Photo: Win McNamee (Getty Images)

Congress’ horrendously timed summer vacay might be coming to an early close so that lawmakers can address literally any of the myriad simultaneous crises making our lives a living hell right now.

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After spending their Saturday discussing whether to reconvene the House of Representatives to address the President’s refusal to fund the United States Postal Service in an apparent attempt to suppress the mass mail-in voting this November that will be highly necessary given the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that the federal government has politically exploited while doing next to nothing to contain it even as the national death toll nears 170,000 (Asteroid!! Please!! Kill us now!!!!), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and other Democratic leaders have called on U.S.P.S. leaders to appear before the chamber early next week, ABC News reports.

The House Oversight and Reform Committee has demanded that the recently appointed Postmaster General Louis DeJoy—who happenssssss to be a big-time Republican donor slash Donald Trump supporter—and Postal Service board of governors chair Robert “Mike” Duncan testify before an emergency hearing on Aug. 24.

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“The hearing will examine the sweeping operational and organizational changes at the Postal Service that experts warn could degrade delivery standards, slow the mail and potentially impair the rights of eligible Americans to cast their votes through the mail in the upcoming November elections,” said Pelosi and other Democratic lawmakers in a statement, per Politico. “The Postmaster General and top Postal Service leadership must answer to the Congress and the American people as to why they are pushing these dangerous new policies that threaten to silence the voices of millions, just months before the election.”

Speaking of silencing the voices of would-be voters, did you know that the vast majority of the 2.3 million people living in U.S. prisons and jails lose their ability to vote upon incarceration? And that formerly incarcerated felons could end up indefinitely disenfranchised even after release due to a variety of factors in as many as 32 states—something that disproportionately penalizes Black and Latinx Americans given the clearly documented racial disparities in the country’s criminal justice system? Comparing two instances of voter suppression in the U.S. would perhaps be unproductive to either cause, but I do wish both instances were given the same attention and priority by those with the power to address them.

Freelance contributor

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DISCUSSION

While the Post Office will be vital to the election, it’s also vital to daily living for millions who depend on USPS for mail order prescriptions. The POTUS is attacking an essential national service. It would be nice if some reporter could ask Trump if he understands Americans depend on the Post Office every day.