DeJoy Brought On Four Staffers At His Ex-Businesses To Work With Him At USPS

U.S. Postmaster General Louis Dejoy arrives at a meeting at the office of Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) at the U.S. Capitol August 5, 2020. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
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September 15, 2020 6:55 p.m.

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy brought on four staffers at his private businesses to work with him at USPS in June, according to a CNN report on Tuesday.

Citing documents obtained by American Oversight through a FOIA request regarding personnel changes at USPS, CNN reported that within two weeks into DeJoy’s tenure as postmaster general on June 15, he hired four employees who worked at his private companies to serve as his chief of staff, executive administrator and senior executive advisers at USPS.

According to CNN, DeJoy hired Patrick Fiorentino and Kelly Abney — who previously worked at XPO Logistics, which DeJoy sat on the Board of Directors of after it acquired his own company, New Breed Logistics, in 2014 —  as senior executive advisers starting on June 27. The documents show that Abney was hired with a base salary of $195,000, and Fiorentino was hired with a base salary of $180,000.

DeJoy hired Heather Clarke — who began working at USPS on June 20 after previously working for DeJoy’s real estate investment and consulting firm, LDJ Global Strategies LLC, since December 2015, as well as the DeJoy-Wos Family Foundation Inc. since 2009 — as his chief of staff with a base salary of $184,900.

Additionally, DeJoy appointed Emily Saunders — who served as an administrative assistant at LDJ Global Strategies since July 2016 — as an executive administrator starting June 20.

According to CNN, the documents also show that DeJoy earns $303,460 for his base salary as postmaster general.

“This is the story we’ve seen over and over in the Trump administration: One set of rules for the president and his closest allies, and another for everyone else,” American Oversight Executive Director Austin Evers told CNN in a statement. “DeJoy’s cost-cutting initiatives that have caused delivery delays across the country don’t seem to apply to his own staff.”

USPS did not immediately respond to TPM’s request for comment.

CNN’s report on DeJoy’s hiring of former employees at his private businesses comes as he faces scrutiny from Democrats regarding his controversial cost-cutting changes to USPS that have prompted widespread mailing delays.

DeJoy’s reputation as a Republican megadonor and President Trump’s baseless claims that mail-in voting leads to voter fraud prompted allegations that the Trump administration was politicizing the USPS ahead of the November election, as states expand access to vote-by-mail amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

DeJoy denied the allegations by arguing that his cost-cutting changes to USPS were intended to save the organization money in the short and long term.

Last month, DeJoy announced days before a slate of congressional hearings that he will postpone the USPS overhaul until after the November election “to avoid even the appearance of any impact on election mail.”

Earlier this month, DeJoy came under fire over an alleged straw donor scheme. According to reports in the Washington Post and the New York Times, former New Breed Logistics employees claimed that DeJoy illegally pushed his then-employees to donate to GOP candidates at his fundraisers, then would later reimburse their donations in the form of bonuses.

Shortly after the publication of reports regarding DeJoy’s alleged straw donor scheme, House Oversight Chair Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) announced that her committee is launching an investigation into the allegations.

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