Mail-in-voting concerns addressed by Oregon’s secretary of state

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon’s top election official is addressing concerns about the U.S. Postal Service’s ability to handle the upcoming influx of ballots.

Recently, President Trump renewed his attacks on vote-by-mail, claiming that foreign entities could interfere with the upcoming election through ballots handled by the USPS. “These countries can grab those ballots, make forgeries of those ballots and they would go out and have a field day,” he said.

Democrats say the president’s opposition to mail-in voting amounts to voter suppression. According to Postal Union leaders, obstacles set by the White House include new limits on overtime at the Post Office and policy changes like hard cut-off times for when delivery trucks roll out, leading to delivery delays.

Even with the disparaging remarks about mail-in voting, the president himself reportedly requested an absentee ballot from Florida, which will presumably return by mail.

Late last month, election officials across the country received letters from the USPS saying letter delivery times cannot be guaranteed this year.

In light of the letter, Oregon Secretary of State Bev Clarno issued the following statement:

“Fortunately, Oregon has two decades of experience working with our local contacts at the United States Postal Service and has an excellent partnership with them to ensure ongoing support for our elections. We will of course continue to work with them and monitor any potential impact to both the mailing out of ballots to voters and the return of ballots. We at the state level are meeting with our USPS partners to ensure we are ready for November. The USPS recognizes that Oregon leads the nation with Vote by Mail and that we are using the latest USPS technology to streamline the process.

“If any Oregon voter is concerned about the upcoming election, there are multiple steps they can take to ensure their ballot is received in time to be counted. Every ballot has a unique barcode so voters can track their ballot on our My Vote website. We also encourage voters to take advantage of the hundreds of conveniently located dropsites throughout the state to drop off their ballot in person. We will continue to work with our partners like county clerks across the state to make sure all Oregonians know the best options to return their ballots, whether it’s through the mail or in secure drop boxes to meet election deadlines.”

The USPS is quickly running out of money, warning it could have problems around election time. Anyone looking to mail a ballot is asked to do so quickly as President Trump said he wants to block billions of dollars in funding for the Postal Service if Democrats don’t agree to terms for a coronavirus relief bill.

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