The president has been decrying the expansion of voting by mail during the pandemic for months now, and on Thursday, he admitted that he’s trying to undermine the United States Postal Service in order to limit turnout in November. “Now, they need that money in order to make the Post Office work, so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots,” Trump said on Fox Business Network, referring to a Democratic plan to approve $25 billion to the agency. “If they don’t get those two items, that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting, because they’re not equipped.”
Yet Trump himself is reportedly prepared to engage in a process that he has called (without evidence) “rigged”:
Not only has Trump, a frequent mail-in voter, excused himself from his own critique, he has also encouraged voting by mail in a state where Republicans have benefited from the process in the past. “In Florida the election system is Safe and Secure, Tried and True,” the president tweeted last week — despite no difference between Florida’s election system and that of 23 other states that allow universal voting by mail, as New York’s Ed Kilgore notes.
Meanwhile, Trump’s assault on the USPS appears to be working. On Thursday, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that the state’s election deadline — requiring ballots to be in by 8 p.m. on November 3 — was currently too tight for the Postal Service’s “delivery standards,” due largely to the Trump-imposed shortfalls.