Washington — The House Oversight and Reform Committee is launching an investigation into embattled Postmaster General Louis DeJoy following a report alleging he pushed employees at the logistics company he led to make campaign contributions to Republican candidates and reimbursed them for the donations.
Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat from New York who chairs the Oversight panel, said in a statement DeJoy "could face criminal exposure" for the scheme reported by The Washington Post, as well as for lying to her panel under oath, if the accusation are true.
"We will be investigating this issue, but I believe the Board of Governors must take emergency action to immediately suspend Mr. DeJoy, who they never should have selected in the first place," she said.
According to the Post, employees of New Breed Logistics, the North Carolina-based company where DeJoy served as CEO, were urged by him or his aides to make campaign donations or attend fundraisers for GOP candidates at his home. DeJoy, the Post reported, would then reimburse his workers for the contributions through bonuses.
During testimony before the Oversight Committee last month, Congressman Jim Cooper, a Democrat from Tennessee, asked DeJoy whether he repaid his employees for donations they made to Republican politicians.
DeJoy called the claim "outrageous," and said no.
"I'm fully aware of legal campaign contributions and I resent the assertion, sir," he told Cooper during the hearing. "What are you accusing me of?"
Since taking over as postmaster general in June, DeJoy has come under scrutiny for changes to the Postal Service's operations, which caused mail delays. Democrats have accused him of seeking to hamper the mail agency in the run-up to the election because of President Trump's ardent opposition to voting by mail, which many states are expanding because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Oversight Subcommittee on Government Operations on Tuesday released a letter from DeJoy to the panel written on September 2, where DeJoy said Mr. Trump's comments about election mail were "incorrect" and "not helpful to the Postal Service."
In the face of public opposition and pushback, DeJoy halted a series of changes imposed not long after he took the helm of the Postal Service until after the November election. But he has continued to face calls for his resignation from congressional Democrats.
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