Conservative Groups Oppose PRC Nominee

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A postal watchdog and several groups with conservative ties oppose the nomination of a retired postmaster and former labor leader to the Postal Rate Commission.

PostalWatch and six other advocacy groups sent a letter to President Bush opposing Dawn Tisdale's appointment to the PRC. The letter asked Bush not to exercise his constitutional authority to finalize Tisdale's appointment without Senate approval during the summer congressional recess.

Congress returns to session Sept. 7. A source with a commercial mailing organization told DM News that mail industry insiders consider a recess appointment of Tisdale by the president to be unlikely.

Tisdale is a retired postmaster and former letter carrier. While a letter carrier, he was vice president of the National Association of Letter Carriers branch in Austin, TX.

The groups said they found the notion of someone from the U.S. Postal Service being placed in a position to regulate the USPS "rather unusual."

"In short, we fear Mr. Tisdale would be a 'rubber stamp' for the interests of the USPS and its unions rather than an objective, independent citizen/ratepayer watchdog," the groups stated in the letter.

The National Association of Postmasters of the United States supports Tisdale's appointment. Rather than being a liability, Tisdale's experience as a postal employee makes him a desirable candidate for the PRC, said Bob Levi, the association's director of government relations.

"There's no better person or type of person to be involved in regulating an industry than a person who has been involved in that industry and understands how it operates," Levi said.

In addition to PostalWatch, the other groups signing the letter are: Americans for Tax Reform; the National Taxpayers Union; the American Conservative Union; 60 Plus; Small Business Survival Committee; and Frontiers of Freedom. All six have connections to -- or received money from -- Republican or corporate interests.

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