Colorado secretary of state Jena Griswold (D) took aim at the U.S. Postal Service on Twitter late Friday after she said the mail service had sent out a misleading informational postcard to voters containing an inaccurate checklist for mail-in voting that could undermine the election and “suppress votes.”
I just found out the @USPS is sending this postcard to every household and PO Box in the nation. For states like Colorado where we send ballots to all voters, the information is not just confusing, it’s WRONG. (Thread) pic.twitter.com/RoTTeJRJVl
— Jena Griswold (@JenaGriswold) September 12, 2020
The postcard, sent to homes across the country, contained a checklist intended to help those voting by mail prepare for the upcoming November elections which are now less than eight weeks away.
Among its listed priorities is for eligible voters to “request a ballot,” which is unnecessary in some states where elections officials send out ballots automatically to every registered voter.
The USPS postcard also incorrectly advises voters to “mail your ballot at least 7 days before Election Day,” even though voters in some states — including Colorado– are told by local election officials to mail them back sooner.
“Why is the USPS telling voters a different timeline?” Griswold tweeted.
“Confusing voters about mail ballots in the middle of a pandemic is unacceptable,” Griswold tweeted. “It can undermine confidence in the election & suppress votes. I will do everything in my power to stop @USPS from sending misinformation to voters.”
Griswold said that secretaries of state had asked postmaster general Louis DeJoy to review a draft before election information was sent out to voters to make sure it was accurate, adding that the Trump-allied, former GOP mega-donor refused. “Now millions of postcards with misinformation are printed & being mailed to voters,” Griswold wrote. She added that officials in her state had asked the USPS not to send the postcards but “they flat out refused.”
According to Griswold, what may have begun as a “well-intentioned effort” by the mail service has been marred by “refusal” from postal officials to heed the recommendations of election experts.
She contended that a failure to listen to local experts combined with the recent postal delays in some parts of the country is “beyond suspect.”
Griswold previously accused President Donald Trump in August of making efforts to suppress voting, saying that he couldn’t be trusted given his history of inviting “foreign interference into our elections.”
“Unfortunately, the President is doing everything he can to undermine confidence and take away the people’s right to vote,” she said in an MSNBC interview.
USPS spokesperson David Rupert issued a statement Friday obtained by a local NBC-affiliated station, KUSA, addressing Griswold’s concerns, saying that the USPS had started a multi-pronged public information effort in August that will continue through Election Day. The “nonpartisan” campaign was aimed at educating the public about the mail service’s role in the mail-in ballot process.
“The non-partisan campaign neither encourages nor discourages mail-in voting; rather, it is designed to reach and inform all voters about the importance of planning ahead if they plan to vote by mail, Rupert said.