America's Political Minefield: The Competitive World of Post Office Renaming

“Shortly before 6 p.m., near the end of a two-hour debate on the plan, Republicans halted the proceedings, and Democrats claimed that Mr. Boehner was still short of the votes he needed.

At 6:50 p.m., the leaders stopped all business on the floor, where the House had worked through a list of post offices to be renamed, and called a” — Wait, what’s that? Post office renaming? Oh yes. Lots of what our government does is rename post offices, actually! This year alone, “50 bills to rename post offices have been introduced. Three of those bills have made it to the president’s desk, representing a full 13 percent of all legislation signed by President Obama this year.” And back in the 111th Congress (simpler times! Ended in January!), over two years there were 427 bills to rename post offices — but only 70-something of those bills passed. It turns out getting a post office named after you is incredibly challenging! But post office icons beware. Now that they’re closing just under 3700 of them, sometimes the post office you just got named after your dead war hero son is on the list for shuttering.