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Arizona lawmakers speak out about USPS ballot issue

AZ lawmakers reactions about mail in ballots
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Posted at 10:52 PM, Aug 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-18 10:15:55-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — Democratic lawmakers in Arizona are speaking out about issues and concerns over mail-in ballots and if the U.S. Postal Service in the state can handle the load.

Congressman Tom O'Halleran released a statement on Friday saying:

"We must ensure now, more than ever, that the USPS can continue to operate without delay and free of political threat. Action is needed, urgently."

Meanwhile, according to Senator Kyrsten Sinema's office:

Senator Sinema is a longtime advocate of protecting reliable postal service - which she knows so many Arizonans rely on, especially in rural communities - and she's ensuring the USPS is fully equipped.

Senator Sinema is a cosponsor of the bipartisan Postal Service Emergency Assistance Act—legislation providing the Postal Service with up to $25 billion in emergency COVID-19 funding, and Senator Sinema has also cosponsored a Senate resolution calling for increased funding and support for the Postal Service to protect mail service in Arizona. Senator Sinema has also called on Senate leaders to hold hearings on recent changes made by the Postal Service and how best to protect our election and right to vote.

Senator Sinema has long said that Arizona has led the way on safe, secure mail-in voting for years. She thinks the rest of the country can follow Arizona's lead and the Postal Service must be able to support our upcoming election. Senator Sinema is working with Arizonans, the Arizona Secretary of State’s office, the Postal Service, and her colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure a safe and successful election.

Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick released a statement saying in part:

"We cannot allow our USPS facilities and processing centers to face financial hardships that may result in consolidation or cuts and we cannot allow the Postmaster to implement changes that disenfranchise Americans ability to vote by mail or simply receive their packages."

Congressman Raul Grijalva is set to speak at the Letter Carriers Association on Tuesday about the issues and how he's against efforts to dismantle the U.S. Postal Service.

Senator Martha McSally also Monday released the following statement:

“The USPS currently has $15 billion cash on hand and received a $10 billion loan from the CARES Act to support USPS operational expenses during the pandemic. Senator McSally has fought throughout her time in Congress to preserve key services of USPS, including her work to prevent the closure of the Cherrybell mail processing facility in Tucson. The Senator has every intention of ensuring the Postal Service has the resources to be fully operational and individuals continue to get their mail—including important things like prescriptions and absentee ballots—in a timely manner.”

Congress is set to vote on the "Delivering for America Act"on Saturday. The bill would basically stop the post office from making any changes to operations and services levels that were set in January 2020 and would last throughout the pandemic.