Silicon Valley IPOs are being celebrated in parking lots and conference rooms, as CEOs navigate pandemic and wildfire smoke
President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence look on during the daily briefing on the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in the Brady Briefing Room at the White House on April 2, 2020, in Washington, DC.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images
A former aide to Vice President Mike Pence slammed the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and said she will vote for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden as a result of her experience in the White House.
Olivia Troye, who was Pence’s leading aide on the White House’s coronavirus task force, cut an ad for the group Republican Voters Against Trump in which she claimed the president cares about no one but himself.
“Towards the middle of February, we knew it wasn’t a matter of if Covid would become a big pandemic here in the United States, it was a matter of when,” Troye says in the ad. “But the president didn’t want to hear that because his biggest concern was that we were in an election year and how is this going to affect what he considers to be his record of success?”
In a statement, White House spokesperson Judd Deere characterized Troye as a “disgruntled” former employee.
“Outside of generally watching the White House Coronavirus Taskforce from the overflow staff room, this disgruntled former detailee was never in private meetings with the President and her assertions have no basis in reality and are flat out inaccurate,” Deere said in the statement. “The truth is President Trump always put the well-being of the American people first as evidenced by his shutdown of the country, which saved millions of lives, activating the greatest mobilization of the private sector since World War II to deliver critical supplies, the development of a never-before-seen testing system that is the envy of the world, and an unending focus on the rapid research and approval of scientifically proven therapeutics and an eventual vaccine.”
Troye claimed in the video that Trump once said in a meeting that the virus might be “a good thing” because he would no longer need to shake hands with “these disgusting people.” The White House did not immediately respond to an inquiry about this claim.
“Those disgusting people are the same people that he claims to care about,” she said in the video.
This story is developing. Check back for updates.
A US Postal worker delivers Amazon boxes outside of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on October 11, 2018 in New York City.
Spencer Platt | Getty Images
President Donald Trump has routinely blamed Amazon for problems with the U.S. Postal Service, but new documents show the e-commerce giant remains a large and lucrative customer for the USPS.
The USPS circulated “fact-checking statements” internally that buck Trump’s criticisms of Amazon and shed new light on its relationship with the company, according to documents obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request by watchdog group American Oversight. The documents were first reported by The Washington Post.
Trump has claimed that Amazon costs the Postal Service “billions,” but the USPS said in the fact-checking statements, circulated earlier this year, that Amazon was the Postal Service’s “largest customer” in fiscal 2019, generating about $3.9 billion in revenue and $1.6 billion in profit.
The Postal Service also countered Trump’s oft-repeated argument that it needs to raise prices to make money on deliveries, the documents show. By contrast, the USPS said it has the largest price increases “in recent history” from 2018 to 2019, including a 10% price increase for its Parcel Select service, which is used by Amazon.
“USPS would see a net contribution loss with a significant share of its package business if prices were to be raised significantly,” according to the documents. “USPS competitors could take share in these instances.”
According to the documents, the agency also expressed concern in April that, if it were to raise prices, it would “cede ground” to competitors and Amazon’s growing logistics network.
“Amazon has been aggressively insourcing volume with Amazon logistics, sending two billion-plus packages in fiscal 2019, which primarily cuts into USPS’ share,” the documents state.
A spokesperson for The White House was not immediately available to comment on the documents.
The documents provide a glimpse into the extent of the Postal Service’s relationship with Amazon, which became complicated months into the coronavirus outbreak.
Amazon relies on several carriers to deliver packages, such as UPS and FedEx, and is building its own network of contracted delivery partners. But the documents illustrate how Amazon continues to rely on the Postal Service.
The Postal Service delivered more than 1.5 billion Amazon packages, or roughly 30% of its total volume, in fiscal 2019, according to the documents.
The USPS delivers Amazon packages that are fulfilled by Amazon warehouses, known as Fulfillment by Amazon, and orders that are fulfilled independently by third-party merchants. “The majority of revenue and volume from Amazon” is through FBA, the Postal Service stated, according to the documents.
The Postal Service faced pressure from Amazon in April, as the pair were in the process of negotiating new pricing agreements. The USPS held a teleconference with Amazon on April 9, wherein Amazon voiced concerns about the agency’s “viability to them as continued shipping partner,” according to the documents,
“Amazon made it very clear that the USPS is alone, globally, among their partners in having this pricing uncertainty,” the documents state. “Additionally, Amazon is concerned that any stimulus from the Treasury will come with stipulations, causing concern and further risk.”
Amazon pressed the Postal Service to answer questions about its financial woes, which were exacerbated by the pandemic. Among the questions it asked we