After telling us for years that the USPS was bankrupt and needed to be privatized, Republicans in Congress have suddenly come up with the bizarre idea that the USPS can pay for repairing our highways:
Raising the U.S. gasoline tax is out as a way to shore up the Highway Trust Fund. So is taxing drivers based on the number of miles they clock. A plan to use taxes on companies’ overseas profits hasn’t gone anywhere.
So House Republicans are now turning to the money-losing U.S. Postal Service.
Unusual as it may sound, possible savings from revamping the agency’s operations are on the table as one way to patch highway funding, said two Republican legislative aides with knowledge of the talks.
“The long-term financial prospects of the Postal Service are fairly grim, so the idea that you could take money from that and not further exacerbate one problem in order to try to do a temporary Band-Aid on the other one borders on bizarre,” said Scott Lilly, a former staff director of the House Appropriations Committee. He’s now a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a policy group aligned with Democrats.
We shouldn’t really be surprised by the GOP’s latest bizarre stunts- Darrell Issa, back in January, suggested that the USPS could finance an increase in military pensions!