Trump reportedly pushed postmaster general to double Amazon fees

But she's resisted, insisting that such a move would have to go before a regulatory commission, according to The Washington Post.

Doubling the rate the US Postal Service charges Amazon could cost companies involved billions of dollars.
Getty Images

President Donald Trump pushed US Postmaster General Megan Brennan to double how much the Postal Service charges Amazon as well as other firms to ship packages, according to The Washington Post.

Brennan has reportedly resisted the move, insisting the arrangements are bound by contracts and need to be reviewed by a regulatory commission. She also reportedly told Trump that the Postal Service's relationship with Amazon is beneficial for the service and gave him slides showing several companies, along with Amazon, that partner for deliveries. 

President Trump has regularly criticized Amazon, calling the company's use of the Postal Service a "scam" and swiping at the company's lobbying efforts. He's also said Amazon is causing "tremendous loss to the US." Last month, the president ordered an evaluation of the Postal Service's finances, after weeks of accusations that Amazon isn't paying its fair share of postage.

Trump's aides have reportedly disagreed about whether Amazon is paying the Postal Service enough. Some believe it should pay more, while others say Amazon is helping to keep the Postal Service in business, sources told the Post. 

Trump has met with at least three groups of senior advisers -- which include Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, then-National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and Domestic Policy Council Director Andrew Bremberg -- to discuss Amazon's business practices and whether it's paying the appropriate amount of taxes or paying the Postal Service enough.  

Amazon said it spent $21.7 billion on shipping costs last year, which includes sorting, delivery center and transportation costs. Analysts estimate that around 40 percent of its packages are delivered by the Postal Service, according to the Post. It's unknown how much Amazon pays the Postal Service every year. 

The president's push to increase the company's shipping and delivery costs are the only known official action he's taken against the company. The move could cost the companies involved billions of dollars, the Post reports.

Amazon and the Postal Service declined to comment. The White House didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

First published May 18 at 12:37 p.m.
Update, 12:56 p.m.: Adds that the Postal Service declined to comment. 

'Alexa, be more human': Inside Amazon's effort to make its voice assistant smarter, chattier and more like you.

Follow the Money: This is how digital cash is changing the way we save, shop and work.