Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Politics of Studying Closing Post Offices

Closing a Post Office or processing plant has always caused blowback on Capital Hill.  The following two maps show where the Post Offices under study for closure and the results of the 2010 Congressional election using the traditional red for districts that elected a Republican and Blue for Congressman that elected a Democrat.   The two maps show that most of the Post Offices on the closure list that fall outside of the large metro areas are located in districts represented by Republican.  (Districts in urban areas are too compact to tell whether they are represented by a Democrat or Republican.)

Looking at voting results in the 2008 Presidential election by county developed by the Los Angeles Times further suggests that the closure of Post Offices in rural counties will generally vote Republican even in years that Democrats do particularly well.   Therefore, the voters who will be most upset about closing Post Offices in rural areas will bethose who regularly vote for Republican candidates. It should be interesting to see how this influences the shape of future reforms of the Postal Service.  In addition, the fate of rural postal services could become an issue in the Republican Presidential primaries, especially in Iowa which has so many Post Offices on the list.


Anonymous said...

The PMG is selling out the Postal workers, I repeat the workers. Still not cutting the fat where it needs to be like headquarters and district offices. What percent would that save? Way more than the 1% of savings by taking away rural post offices and the convenience for customers' and the workers of the postal services. PMG giving away postal jobs to the private sector!

Anonymous said...

I understand the correlation, but I'm not sure if the two are related. I can certainly see that the majority of the closings are in rural areas. It seems to me that the offices being closed are the ones being used the least. The exceptions would most likely be the ones in the large cities being closed--without a doubt they carry more volume than the rural offices. But in large cities, the services can be found a small distance away.
It seems that your blog is making the argument that the post office is closing branches that are in Republican districts. My argument is that they are trying to close offices that are not profitable. They are also asking for permission to raise rates.
It certainly causes concern to see post offices closing. Were I living in rural TX, I would be very concerned for my future access to the rest of the world. But as it is, those of us in large cities are already subsidizing mail delivery to those rural locations.
This subject will be a test of rural Republicans' willingness to practice what they preach. They want free market, and this is it. Their life in the country will now cost them more