President Trump on Thursday said he’s against the United States Postal Service funding Democrats are seeking while noting that without it, “you can’t have universal mail-in voting.”
Trump in an interview on Fox Business said that while Democrats are asking for about $3.5 billion in funding for mail-in voting and $25 billion for the USPS as part of the stimulus bill that’s being negotiated in Congress, “they aren’t getting there,” and “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.”
Trump previously made similar comments on Wednesday, per The Washington Post, saying that “they don’t have the money to do the universal mail-in voting. So therefore, they can’t do it, I guess.” He has repeatedly claimed without evidence that widespread mail-in voting amid the pandemic would result in a “corrupt election,” despite approving of the use of absentee ballots, which are effectively the same thing, and claiming that mail-in voting is fine specifically in Florida.
The president’s suggestion that he will reject a stimulus bill with USPS funding in it only further complicates the talks given that this is crucial for Democrats, Politico‘s Jake Sherman notes. And by describing how universal mail-in voting wouldn’t be possible without the funding he’s against, The Washington Post‘s Aaron Blake wrote that Trump appeared to casually reveal his “true motive in blocking” it. Indeed, Axios‘ Jonathan Swan said that he’s been trying to “get to the bottom of the strategy” with the Post Office, but here Trump “just says it out loud.”