First-Class Mail Missing Arrival Dates as Millions Vote by Mail, USPS Data Shows

With the presidential election less than two weeks away, a number of postal districts in key swing states are failing to deliver First-Class mail in time, prompting fears that people may get their ballot rejected.

The United States Postal Service aims to have their First-Class mail delivered within one to three days around 95 percent of the time.

Data shows that from the week of October 3, several districts in states across the country were way below this target. According to the data, Detroit was the worst performing district out of the 67, delivering just 70.9 percent of First class mail on-time compared to the national average of 86.1 percent.

The sixth worst district was Philadelphia Metro, which delivered 79.7 percent of its first-class mail on time, with Greensboro the ninth worse with 80.6 percent of mail delivered on time.

The district's respective states of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina are considered key battleground states which could determine who wins or loses the upcoming election.

Other districts in key states such as Central Pennsylvania, Ohio Central and South Florida are also found to be performing below the national average with regards to on-time delivery of first-class mail.

The sub-par mail delivery standards in parts of the country was criticized in a report published Friday by Michigan Sen. Gary Peters.

The report found that first-class delivered on-time in 85.6 percent of cases in mid-October, down from an average of 91 percent earlier this year.

Peters said the service has gotten better since Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's controversial cost-cutting measures in July, but improvement was still needed.

"While the Postal Service has made some improvements since congressional oversight and federal litigation against Postmaster General DeJoy's actions began, on-time delivery levels remain unacceptably low," Peters said.

In a statement to the Associated Press, Postal Service spokesman David Partenheimer said a number of steps have been taken to ensure ballots will be delivered on time, including additional delivery and collection trips and more and overtime hours. The agency will also treat election mail as first-class having previously only been an informal policy.

"The Postal Service is fully committed and actively working to handle the increase in election mail volume across the country over the next two weeks," Partenheimer said.

As noted by NBC, October 27 is considered a vital date to have got your postal vote sent. It is estimated that getting your vote posted by then will give you a 98 percent chance of it arriving by Election Day seven days later.

Partenheimer assured that said the agency is fully prepared to handle the election.

"To put it in context, the Postal Service delivers 433 million pieces of mail in a day," Partenheimer told NBC. "Even if all Americans were to vote by mail this year, 330 million ballots over the course of the election would be only three-quarters of what the Postal Services delivers in a single day."

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Vote-by-mail ballots are seen at the Miami-Dade County Election Department in Miami on October 19. EVA MARIE UZCATEGUI/AFP/Getty