Postal Service does more harm than good by prioritizing package delivery

This is a contributed op-ed written by Paul Steidler, a senior fellow with the Lexington Institute. Opinions are the author’s own.

While the Chairman of the Package Coalition recently wrote an op-ed about how the U.S. Postal Service “rose to the challenges” of the holiday season, the American public — which has been experiencing unprecedented poor mail service — vehemently disagrees.

Only 64% of first-class mail in America was delivered on time for the week ending Dec. 26, 2020, a record-poor performance. Yet 94.6% of USPS packages met their deadline for the same period. No wonder Package Coalition Chairman John McHugh is happy, and Americans who rely on the mail are not.

Packages by their very nature are disruptive to the free flow of mail. They are bigger, bulkier and do not go to every address. They take up more room and require more trips back to postal facilities from delivery routes. On March 11, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy testified that a tractor trailer can hold 500,000 pieces of mail but only 5,000 packages.

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