Representative Katie Porter’s name was trending on Twitter Monday well before her questioning of Trump-appointed Postmaster General Louis DeJoy in front of the House Oversight Committee. The California Democrat, who has emerged as a frighteningly tough questioner in House hearings, took a very basic approach to questioning DeJoy, the former Trump fundraiser who is suspected of hamstringing the Postal Service’s ability to send and deliver mail-in ballots in the November 3 election.
We quickly learned from Porter’s questions that DeJoy knew how much a first-class postage stamp costs (55 cents), but that he had no idea how much the USPS charges to send a postcard. Nor had he any idea of how may people voted by mail in the last election.
Here’s the exchange between Porter and DeJoy:
PORTER: If you did not order these actions to be taken, please tell the committee the name who did.
DEJOY: I don't know.
PORTER: Will you commit to reversing these changes?
DEJOY: No. pic.twitter.com/m8hjVgi1wE
— Pod Save America (@PodSaveAmerica) August 24, 2020
Perhaps most alarmingly, the postmaster general said he was not responsible for decommissioning 671 massive mail-processing machines, which has slowed the delivery of mail and could potentially slow the delivery of ballots in states where they must be delivered to election officials by or on Election Day. DeJoy said those changes were in motion before he took his place atop the agency. Nor would he commit to recommissioning the machines, which were spread over 49 states and represented 10% of the total number of machines.
DeJoy said last week that the USPS would put a number of belt-tightening measures on hold until after the election, but the damage may have already been done.