Among the thousands of post offices under review for closure is a cramped branch in downtown Elmira, N.Y., bustling on a rainy summer afternoon. It was, until recently, a place retiree Charlotte Dumas took for granted. She visits the downtown branch about three times a week. "I would hate to see it close," she says. "It's so convenient." And it's a bargain. The United States Postal Service (USPS) delivers an average of 563 million pieces of mail a day, six days a week. For a 44-cent stamp, you can send a letter to the far reaches of the nation. Rain, sleet, and manic dogs don't stop the service, which carries mail by pack mule to the Havasupai Indian reservation at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and operates branches in towns of fewer than 100 residents. Too good to be true? It might soon be. To help close a $20 billion revenue shortfall by 2015, the USPS may be forced to shutter as many as 3,700 post offices nationwide.
Her campaign manager, Ed Rollins, and deputy campaign manager, David Polyansky, moved on to other duties over the weekend. Is presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann the new Newt Gingrich?
In a rain-dampened Iowa field Saturday, Sarah Palin titillated the tea party faithful who chanted "Run, Sarah, Run." She gave a full-throated presidential stump speech, even if there is as yet no official stump.