Cash, who works in Lancaster, N.Y., said her post office is about two days behind its normal processing time. "The cardinal rule is, 'don't delay the mail,' and we're in a 180-degree switch where we're delaying mail every day," she said, adding that if the system is not fixed before election season, "it's going to be a catastrophe at the post office." [...]
The current backlogs are becoming so dire that if the new procedures remain in place, workers may not be able to locate all the ballots in time for them to be processed, they said.
"If they keep this up until the election, there's no telling how many days-worth of delays there could be. I mean, we'll be delivering political mail days after the election," a postal worker from California said. [...]
Election officials across the country are warning voters to send their general-election ballots as early as possible to avoid potential delays. The Postal Service recommends voters request their ballots at least 15 days before Election Day and mail their completed ballots at least one week before the due date.
"Don't wait for covid numbers to start rising and go like, 'Oh my gosh, I'm not going to the polls, I'm going to vote from home,' " Kerns said. "Just anticipate now that we'll probably see an upsurge as people come closer together, the weather gets colder, so you might as well just plan now to vote by mail."
In a functioning democracy with a functioning postal service, you might assume that what matters for your absentee ballot is the postmark date. NOPE. In most states it must be received by the end of election day.
Also, politicians have a bad habit of declaring defeat before the outstanding ballots are counted. So one good election fraud strategy is to make in-person voting proportionally more difficult for your political enemies... like by closing polling places in counties that won't vote for you. Gee, good thing that's not happening. Oh wait.
As one datapoint in the ongoing shivving of USPS, I ordered a t-shirt recently. It entered a USPS facility near LA on July 7. It made it to the first SF facility on July 9, and to the third SF facility on... July 28.
On the other hand, the big-titty drag furry stamps I ordered arrived in less than a week!
Oh and "save the post office by buying stamps" doesn't work for the same reason that "clean up the BP oil spill by sorting your trash better" doesn't work.
Also, USPS has to treat stamps as "deferred revenue" until they are used, so buying stamps for collection doesn't give them usable income. Which is weird.