Why is Louis Dejoy still the Postmaster General?

The United States Postal Service is an organization that’s been around since the founding of the country. Benjamin Franklin had a hand in making it into the vast organization that is today. Although, I think he’d be downright blown away by how big it is today.

For years, this organization has served a vital role in the livelihood of the American way of life. Transporting more than just Christmas cards and periodicals, they deliver medications, and paychecks, and keep rural homes connected to the world.

Still, despite a few headlines here and there over the years, I bet you’ve never thought about the post office too much. So, why all the hub bub now? Why are so many Americans, Politicians, and presumably you so wound up? Because of Louis Dejoy, that’s why.

In today’s post, I’ll explain the situation with the Post Office, who Louis Dejoy is, and the many controversies surrounding his current tenure and I’ll try to answer why Louis Dejoy is still the Postmaster General when so many want him out.

Who is Louis Dejoy?

Louis Dejoy is a republican businessman who is serving as the current U.S. Postmaster General. He was appointed by the United States Postal Service Board of Governors in May 2020. He would assume office in June 2022.

Official Picture of Postmaster General Louis Dejoy
Postmaster General Louis Dejoy. Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

He is the first Postmaster General in 20 years to serve in this position with no prior postal service experience.

Before he was appointed to this position, he served as the founder and CEO of New Breed Logistics, a logistics and freight company.

What does the Postmaster General Do and what powers does he have?

While the name Postmaster General sounds impressive, essentially whoever serves as the PMG is the chief executive officer or CEO of the United States Postal Service.

Much like a regular CEO in any private corporate setting, he or she runs the day-to-day operations of the agency, in this case, the U.S. Postal Service.

As far as the “power” they have goes, it’s limited to within the scope of the postal service. The PMG does not serve as a member of the President’s cabinet and is not in the line of succession to the Presidency.

Like any public organization, he or she serves at the mercy of their boss, and in this case, that boss would be the board of governors.

How long does the Postmaster General get to serve in office?

There is no set term for the position of Postmaster General. The appointed person can hold that office for as long as the Board of Governors approves.

What is the Board of Governors of the United States Postal Service?

The Board of Governors is the governing board of the Postal Service. They monitor the activities of the United States Postal Service, like controlling its expenditures and reviewing its practices and policies.

How many members are on the Board of Governors of the United States Postal Service?

The board in total is made up of 11 members, 9 of which are Presidentially appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate. Ultimately, the board of governors functions very similarly to a board of directors at a publicly traded company. The 9 members of the board, serve terms of 7 years.

The governors of the board, elect or “hire” the Postmaster General, select a chairman of the Board, and the USPS Inspector General.

No more than 5 members of the board can belong to the same political party. The board members have the ability to remove or fire others officers, such as the Postmaster General. So long as a majority vote is taken.

What has Louis Dejoy done to the USPS?

Depending on who you talk to, Louis Dejoy is doing everything in his power to destroy the postal service and cause harm to the people who depend on the reliability and affordability that the postal service provides, and given some of his plans, I’m inclined to agree.

Row of U.S. Postal Service mail drop boxes
Row of Postal Service Drop Boxes.

Earlier this year, Dejoy unveiled his ten-year plan called “Delivering for America“. The plan will see an unprecedented rollback of services in a generation.

His ten-year plan will set forth longer delivery times while raising postal rates, and overall will slow the rate of mail transport across the country.

For example, currently, most standard or first class mail deliveries are expected to be delivered within 1 to 3 business days. Under these new changes, it now falls to 6 business days.

While some say that the 3-day window will stay in effect in larger metropolitan areas, the “fringe” areas of the service will fall to that six-day timeframe.

While on the surface, this sounds okay, the problem lies with the fact that it is those very people and communities that live on the “fringes” of the country that depend on the post office the most and now would be greatly affected.

As you can imagine, this could prove to be harmful to them, if not downright deadly for people in these areas that depend on the post office for services, especially medications.

Aside from slowing delivery times, Dejoy and his plan will see to the closure of several local post offices in communities across the country. Affecting jobs for those workers at those locations but possibly impacting the members of those communities as well.

While perhaps some cities may have too many offices, akin to a Starbucks on every corner, closing one won’t affect the area.

However, closing a post office in a small town, for instance, could cause a person to have to drive to another town altogether, while it would be a simple inconvenience for some it could be completely impossible for others.

Finally, job losses, a lot of them. As per the 10-year plan, Dejoy intends to cut non-career turnover in half. With the hopeful intention of turning those non-career employees into full-time career employees and while some reports show that a solid effort has been made, skeptics are still fearful for several hundred other employees who could lose work, for good if their local offices are shuttered.

Why are so many people angry about Louis Dejoy’s 10-year plan anyway?

Above, I gave you a quick rundown on some of the negatives of Louis Dejoy’s 10-year plan. The reason people are so angry about it is a bit of a newer issue altogether. Simply put, the argument is this; is the post office a service or a business?

If you answered a service, you’d be right! However, if you answered business, you’d also be right. This article here goes into great detail about it all.

The post office is a hybrid, it’s supposed to be a service, as some of its aspects are monitored and governed by the U.S. Government. For instance, they demand that certain mail pieces be delivered to every part of the nation for a standard rate.

From a business perspective, that’s ludicrous but from a service perspective, it’s exactly the sort of thing that should be done to serve every member and community of this great nation, and therein lies the crux of the issue.

For some, it shouldn’t matter if the postal service makes a dime, they’re serving the nation but to others, they should be allowed to be privatized and make cuts and calls to be profitable.

Of course the only problem there is the little old lady that wants to send her grandkids a Christmas card will have to pay double or triple the fifty-five cents for a stamp. I’m oversimplifying here of course but I think you get the idea. (I love my grans Christmas cards dammit!)

Louis Dejoy, is one of those people that feels that the Postal Service should be 100% profitable, who it affects seems to be of little concern to him.

Who wants Louis Dejoy fired and why?

Ultimately, there are several reasons why varying groups and politicians want Louis Dejoy fired. Ultimately, they feel that he is a detriment to the institution and feel that he’s out to destroy the very institution he’s been set to run.

I could go on at length as to why he’s seemingly universally disliked but here is a list of some of the major reasons:

  • His qualifications – Earlier in this article I told you how Louis Dejoy is the first Postmaster General in 20 years that has no previous United States Postal Service experience. While he is a former supply chain and logistics CEO, he has no mailing experience. Typically speaking, you want a person in charge who’s at least done the job in some aspect before. It’s rare that a complete outsider can come in and make positive changes.
  • He’s a Republican donor – Actually, he’s a “megadonor”. Basically, he’s given a lot of money to Republican organizations and candidates, including former President Donald Trump, who conveniently appointed the republican board members that helped hire Dejoy. Finally, he was accused of a Straw-Donar scheme at his previous company!
  • The mail got slower – Since his appointment, the mail has slowed down and that’s just a fact. Affecting businesses and consumers alike and with his 10-year plan, it will only get slower.
  • 2020 election shenanigans – The post office, by all accounts, did a pretty good job with the unprecedented uptick of mail-in ballots, much to the chagrin of Louis Dejoy whose policies saw cutbacks enacted, overtime cut, mail sorting machines removed, and disallowed late and return pickups for more mail during peak times among countless other efforts to delay mail.
  • His connection to Trump – Okay, this one might take a conspiracy take, which I hate, but here we go. Dejoy is and was a large donor, to Trump and the Republican party. This is a fact. Trump appointed loyal members to the board of governors, who then turned around and appointed a Trump donor, Dejoy. Shortly after that appointment, he enacted policies that would hamper mail delivery prior to an election. Finally, Trump himself said in an interview, that he didn’t want to give money to the post office because it would make it work! Here’s what he said:

“They want $3.5 billion for something that will turn out to be fraudulent, that’s election money basically. They want $3.5 trillion – billion dollars for the mail-in votes, OK, universal mail-in ballots, $3.5 trillion. They want $25 billion, 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…

” … 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, they just can’t have it. So, you know, sort of a crazy thing. Very interesting.”

Okay, laid out like that, it doesn’t seem so tin hat crazy, now does it?

Who can fire Louis Dejoy?

The board of governors can both hire and fire the postmaster general. However, to do so, they would need to have a quorum of at least 6 of the 9 governors to have a meeting, in which a vote could take place to fire Louis Dejoy.

The problem here is that until recently, the members of the board were a majority republican, however, now that’s changed and could make for some interesting times ahead!

Can President Biden fire Louis Dejoy?

In short, no. However, he can, “with cause”, fire the governors of the board and then elect a slate of members who could then “do his bidding” so to say, and then fire Louis Dejoy.

However, this is a risky endeavor that could lead to legal battles with little to no chance of winning and would certainly rile up Republicans and the right-wingers of Magaland.

Why is that you ask? What would be the legal cause is the question people would ask. However, according to at least one member of Congress, that “cause” has been met.

Democratic Rep Bill Pascrell, wrote to the President saying that “just cause” has been made present by Dejoy failing to, “represent the public interest” in a letter to the President sent back in 2021.

While he may be right, and I’m not a lawyer, “representing the public interest” might be hard to sell in court. So, unless another member needs replacing and soon, Biden has his hands tied.

Rounding this out

Louis Dejoy, it would seem, is a republican that was hired for a simple reason, to hamper the delivery of the mail during a crucial time in American history and to hopefully put the final nail in the coffin of a long-standing institution that was and is still meant to be a service to all Americans.

Louis Dejoy is still Postmaster General because several decades ago, in the ’70s, well-intentioned politicians, if that’s a thing. Sought to insulate the Post Office from politics and in so, undeniably put its very existence into a political mess, for which, unfortunately, there does not seem to be an easy fix.

3 thoughts on “Why is Louis Dejoy still the Postmaster General?”

  1. All political considerations and tricks should be pushed aside, and this despicable excuse for a public servant, who has openly moved to destroy the agency for which he is responsible, should be pushed to the curb.

    1. Hey Bill,

      Thanks for the comment! Look, I agree. I wish we could wave a magic wand and poof, he’s gone! But there’s rules in place and the original idea was to shield the postmaster general from partisan politics. Unfortunately, it’s biting us in the rear end now, hopefully the new picks to the board can finally oust this guy! Thanks for taking the time, I appreciate your input!

      – Adrian

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