Walt Kelly’s Pogo remarked that “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” In terms of election interference, historically the United States has been the enemy abroad and now we are the enemy at home. There is more than 70 years of evidence of U.S. election interference abroad; the current interference at home is far more threatening. Donald Trump is prepared to do great harm to the November election, creating the kind of cynicism and disarray that will enable Russian President Vladimir Putin’s propagandists to kick on an open door.
The Post Office has been in Trump’s cross hairs since he was told (falsely) in 2017 that he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton due to widespread mail-in balloting fraud. The following year, Trump targeted Jeff Bezos, who owns Amazon and the Washington Post; he charged (falsely) that Bezos was “ripping off” the Post Office with “sweetheart deals” to ship Amazon’s packages. Trump, of course, is obsessed with the negative coverage he receives in the Post as well as the New York Times.
Donald Trump and Attorney General William Barr, facing the possibility of less than six months in command, are stepping up their attacks on governance. Five Inspectors General have been removed since April; the Post Office has been placed in the hands of a political ideologue; and sensitive data related to the coronavirus is being taken away from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last month, two new positions were created at the Census Bureau to allow ideologues to monitor the completion of the decennial census, which has been compromised by the pandemic.