Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential campaign slammed President Donald Trump, accusing him of “sabotaging” the United States Postal Service following remarks Trump made in which he appeared to admit as much.
“The President of the United States is sabotaging a basic service that hundreds of millions of people rely upon, cutting a critical lifeline for rural economies and for delivery of medicines, because he wants to deprive Americans of their fundamental right to vote safely during the most catastrophic public health crisis in over 100 years,” campaign spokesman Andrew Bates said in a statement.
“Even Donald Trump’s own campaign has endorsed voting by mail and his own administration has conclusively refuted his wild-eyed conspiracy theories about the most secure form of voting,” Bates added. “This is an assault on our democracy and economy by a desperate man who’s terrified that the American people will force him to confront what he’s done everything in his power to escape for months — responsibility for his own actions.”
Trump made the controversial remarks earlier this morning during an interview on Fox Business.
“They want $25 billion for the post office. Now, they need that money in order to have the post office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots,” Trump told host Maria Bartiromo. “Now in the meantime, they aren’t getting there. By the way, those are just two items. But if they don’t get those two items that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting, because they’re not equipped to have it.”
“Now, if we don’t make a deal that means they don’t get the money. That means they can’t have universal mail-in voting,” he added. “They just can’t have it. So, you know, sort of a crazy thing.”
The president and Republicans have repeatedly disparaged vote-by-mail options in response to criticisms from voting rights advocates who’ve expressed safety concerns during the coronavirus pandemic.
A study released in April from Stanford University’s Democracy and Polarization Lab found that contrary to the widely-held belief among the GOP that vote-by-mail gives Democrats an advantage over Republicans, vote-by-mail options do not benefit one party more than another.
“By comparing counties that adopt a vote-by-mail program to counties within the same state that do not adopt the program, we are able to compare the election outcomes and turnout behavior of voters who have different vote-by-mail accessibility but who have the same set of candidates on the ballot for statewide races,” researchers wrote.