Taylor Swift is asking fans to "vote early" amid the United States Postal Services's financial struggles. The federal agency is making concerning changes, like removing collection boxes and reducing operating hours, to make up for a lack of funding. The Folklore singer encouraged followers to take action — and called out President Donald Trump — in a couple of tweets sent on Saturday afternoon.
"Trump's calculated dismantling of USPS proves one thing clearly: He is WELL AWARE that we do not want him as our president. He's chosen to blatantly cheat and put millions of Americans' lives at risk in an effort to hold on to power," she wrote. "Donald Trump's ineffective leadership gravely worsened the crisis that we are in and he is now taking advantage of it to subvert and destroy our right to vote and vote safely. Request a ballot early. Vote early."
Donald Trump’s ineffective leadership gravely worsened the crisis that we are in and he is now taking advantage of it to subvert and destroy our right to vote and vote safely. Request a ballot early. Vote early.— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) August 15, 2020
Let's break down Taylor's accusations. For starters, what does she mean by President Trump's "calculated dismantling" of USPS? Well, the president recently chose to block funding to the essential federal organization over his false mail-in voting concerns, despite the USPS losing billions — due largely in part to the coronavirus pandemic. That's not to mention his refusal to pass a $89 billion bailout bill in April. This will only make it more difficult for voters to submit their ballots, especially during a pandemic.
Due to the lack of funding and a subsequent slowdown in mail delivery, the USPS warned nearly every state that ballots will likely arrive late — hence, Taylor's plea to request a ballot ahead of time and vote early. That's a great first step to contribute to the democratic process, but there's still more you can do. Since the USPS doesn't receive taxpayer money anymore, you can help fund its operations by buying a pack (or two . . . or three!) of stamps. You can also contact your local officials, sign petitions, and even purchase USPS merchandise for yourself or a friend. Check out a full list of ways you can help, here.