On Monday’s edition of America’s Newsroom, co-anchor Trace Gallagher interviewed Frank Albergo, head of the postal police union, about a controversial cutback in police duties, for which the postal police union is currently suing the USPS. Their activities are now heavily limited to post office grounds, and they must follow a bureaucratic “decision tree” process before they can respond elsewhere. Instead of connecting the cutback to the Trump administration’s broader efforts to undermine the post office, Gallagher used it to question whether there was even any point in trying to vote by mail.
The cutback order was handed down on August 25 — one day after Postmaster General Louis DeJoy testified to Congress and denied that changes in postal operations were linked to the election. (Trump had previously admitted that he opposed providing additional funding to the Postal Service, because to do so would facilitate mail-in voting.)
The postal police union’s lawsuit was first reported a month ago by Courthouse News Service, but it was given new publicity with an article a few days ago in The Wall Street Journal — a corporate sister publication of Fox News — which added in the speculation that mail thieves could steal ballots.
Fox News anchor Trace Gallagher began the interview by quoting something Albergo had said to the Journal: “If I were going to undermine public trust in the mail, first things I’d do was to pull the postal police.”
And yet, the point seemed to escape both men. Rather than addressing the administration’s deliberate sabotage as the source of the problem, which Fox News has previously dismissed as a conspiracy theory, Gallagher continued to undermine confidence in mail-in voting itself.
“I mean, if they can't track mail theft — what's the point?” Gallagher said. “I mean, the whole thing is if I give a ballot, how do I know it got there, Frank? I mean, how do I know somebody didn't steal it?”
The Journal article had included that the kind of criminals who monitor public mailboxes or even attack mail carriers are typically searching for credit cards and checks. But Gallagher extended this a new mental image: roving gangs looking to rob ballots.
“And I read some of these things about these gangs that are — you know, they lie in wait at these blue post office boxes, and they go in and they grab them,” Gallagher said. “And you know, they're very good at this kind of stuff. What's to stop them from grabbing something else? Something that I put in there that needs to get, you know, to the election commission?”
“We are professionals, and the men and women of the postal police force are confused. They just don't understand why this is happening,” said Albergo. “Why has the Postal Service handcuffed postal police? It is — it's remarkable — and during a pandemic, right before an election. I mean, I wish I could make sense of it.”
“Yeah, well, we're looking for answers as well as you are, Frank Albergo,” Gallagher replied. “If we find them, we'll get back to you.”
Just don’t hold your breath waiting for Fox News to find those answers.