Congress Weighs in on Linking Benefits to Gun Control—Act Now!

By Dave Dolbee published on in News

A few weeks ago, the Shooter’s Log reported that the Obama Administration is looking for ways to use the Social Security Administration (SSA) as a backdoor form of gun control. Its plan is to report all individuals who receive SSA benefits via an assigned designated fiduciary recipient. In other words, if you receive SSA benefits and elect to have someone manage your money for you, the Administration wants to equate it to being unfit to possess a firearm.

ATF Form 4473

Form 4473 asks for your height, weight, race, and social security number. However, the Obama Administration is now looking to connect SSA benefits to NICS checks for millions.

This is similar in nature to the model employed by the Veteran’s Administration, which reports to NICS as “adjudicated as a mental defective” beneficiaries who have been assigned a “fiduciary” to manage their benefits. This action by the VA has already subjected a little over 175,000 beneficiaries to NICS as prohibited persons, done without a hearing, due process or any other judicial investigation or finding whatsoever—no violent crimes, no violent tendencies or dangerous behaviors to themselves or others, just a stroke of the pen to strip them of their Second Amendment rights.

Upping the ante, the administration would now target 4.2 million more Americans via the SSA with designated “representative payees.”

Daylight on the Horizon?

Is there daylight on the horizon? Well, not exactly. However, the Second Amendment does have its supporters in Congress. For instance, 20 members of Congress led by Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX), Chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee of the House Committee on Ways and Means, sent a letter to Carolyn Colvin, acting commissioner of Social Security. The letter pointed out the danger and folly of such action as a “dangerous overreach.”

The letter also puts the Acting Commissioner Colvin on the spot by requesting confirmation of whether or not the SSA intended to pursue the policy. Either way, the Representatives urged the SSA “to abandon any such plan.” Perhaps the letter isn’t the strongest effort, but it is at least a step in the right direction.

SSA Responds

In a letter dated Aug 7, the SSA (Ms. Colvin) responded stating that the “SSA has not provided any names of beneficiaries to the NICS and is not considering sending names based solely on the beneficiaries having representative payees.” That is the good news. The bad news is that Colvin also included a statement that the SSA is currently determining how “[it] must comply with our NICS reporting obligations under Federal law” and “are looking at possible implementation scenarios.” None of those scenarios, according to Colvin, “would refer all SSA beneficiaries with representative payees to the NICS.”

Analysis

Colvin is a bureaucrat, which does not automatically make her untrustworthy, but you have to read between the lines to see some of the danger in her response. For instance, Colvin never said the representative payee would not be used for NICS, just that it would not be the “sole determinant” and not “all” such beneficiaries with representative payees would be reported. That leaves a lot of wiggle room for a bureaucrat. Nor does it address or eliminate the possibility of using some other half-baked criteria to strip recipients of their Second Amendment rights.

Senate Responds

On Aug. 7, 2015, 28 Senators also took up the matter. Led by Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID) the letter expressed concern and inquired about the SSA’s intention to report beneficiaries with representative payees to NICS—similar to Rep. Johnson’s. “It is not at all clear, how this misguided intention is intended to be carried out, or how SSA will serve as adjudicator of risks posed by beneficiaries utilizing its representative payee system.” The letter went on to request a report “on the basis for SSA’s intention to develop such a plan.” Further, the letter admonished, “Old age or a disability does not make someone a threat to society,” and closed by urging SSA “to halt any steps to provide information on Social Security beneficiaries or Supplemental Security Income recipients to the NICS.”

NRA-ILA logo

The NRA-ILA is fighting for your rights. Whether or not you choose to support the NRA-ILA, Second Amendment Foundation, National Association of Gun Rights or others as your primary organization(s) defend the Second Amendment by getting involved.

The NRA is actively engaging members of Congress for preemptive solutions. As a result, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) introduced S. 2002. The bill seeks to halt the VA, SSA or any other agency from reporting individuals to NICS without proper due process that legally determines an individual a danger to themselves or others.

Stand Up and Be Heard!

In the meantime, if you have not already registered your concern, your senators and representatives need your support. If they are against the Second Amendment they need to hear you displeasure! Let them know your opinion on the use of the VA and SSA as a wedge to force individuals to choose between benefits and the Second Amendment. You can use the “Write Your Lawmakers” feature at NRAILA.org or call the Congressional Switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

How do you feel about using the administration’s new proposed criteria as data for NICS checks? Share your opinions in the comment section.

SLRule

Growing up in Pennsylvania’s game-rich Allegany region, Dave Dolbee was introduced to whitetail hunting at a young age. At age 19 he bought his first bow while serving in the U.S. Navy, and began bowhunting after returning from Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Dave was a sponsored Pro Staff Shooter for several top archery companies during the 1990s and an Olympic hopeful holding up to 16 archery records at one point. During Dave’s writing career, he has written for several smaller publications as well as many major content providers such as Guns & Ammo, Shooting Times, Outdoor Life, Petersen’s Hunting, Rifle Shooter, Petersen’s Bowhunting, Bowhunter, Game & Fish magazines, Handguns, F.O.P Fraternal Order of Police, Archery Business, SHOT Business, OutdoorRoadmap.com, TheGearExpert.com and others. Dave is currently a staff writer for Cheaper Than Dirt!

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Comments (89)

  • Mike H. NOT MIKEY^^^^^

    |

    CTD,

    Wow, there’s a lot of suppressed pain in the tone of “Mikey’s” post; and I thought the blog was about standing up for our 2A Rights.

    The peaceful Mike H.
    NRA Member
    USN (OUT)
    AMERICAN
    FATHER
    HUSBAND

    Reply

  • SYZORAX

    |

    Boy’s,Boy’s! Calm down and stop the feud ! If you continue your both showing your lack of maturity and education! Were looking for real insight here! Thank You!

    Reply

  • G-Man

    |

    Good morning Mikey,

    Again, I wish to provide you a helpful reminder as to why your comments are ineffective, and therefore cannot be considered meaningful contributions to any dialogue here. All the rudeness and sarcasm you could ever muster will never change the reality that you have been factually incorrect in every one of your posts. This indisputable, yet verifiable, fact renders it impossible for you to ever regain any amount of credibility to effectively sway one’s opinion your way. The result of which makes your existence here utterly insignificant.

    A review of your ridiculous claims follows:

    * Synonymizing V.A. and Social Security benefits to be no different than unearned welfare handouts.
    * Not understanding subsidies given to a specific group are the only ones considered subsidized.
    * Unknowledgeable that the only way to receive V.A. medical benefits is as a result of an injury.
    * Claiming time in the military gives you free V.A. medical for life regardless of injury.
    * Claiming people had to join the military because they couldn’t get a job at Burger King.
    * Unrealistically expecting the market to overcompensate unskilled laborers.
    * Using your “daddy story” thinking it would support you, but instead did nothing but insult him.
    * Claiming a Vet can’t still be in the military.
    * Making assumptions that a person in my career could never find time to visit forums.
    * Ridiculously demanding that I provide sources to disprove accusations you brought up first.

    Your outrageous claims went well beyond a few acceptable mistakes. This presentation of yourself and your general lack of knowledge was so substandard that it was pointless for you to even continue. But then again, if you had the ability to know this to begin with, you wouldn’t have said the ignorant things you did.

    Next…

    Reply

  • Mike

    |

    Since you obviously have nothing coherent to say, nor have you provided any sources of your ramblings, I will just consider your childish futile attempt at debating as either a child or a very low IQ adult who has nothing better to do with their day. So go ahead & make up your little fantasy world of make believe. I’m sure that is much better than your pathetic dull real life. Otherwise you would find something constructive to do with your time.
    Case closed: Mike 4,872 – “Gman” 0

    Reply

    • G-Man

      |

      Oh come now Mikey, and after all the progress I thought we had made. You’re projecting again. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    Does your mom have a house or do you live in the projects? Further taking my tax dollars!5

    Reply

    • G-Man

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      @ Mike,

      Wait, you’re old enough to actually pay taxes?

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    FAILED AGAIN! No coherent responses to anything. Plus, you are posting all day on here which means you don’t really have all those big important jobs like you claim. LOL, BUSTED AGAIN!

    Reply

    • G-Man

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      @ Mike,

      You know, I really didn’t think it possible that you would be so careless while attempting to appear witty. A fool you do make.

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    You still have nothing! FAILED AGAIN! But that seems to be your entire 33 yrs on the public dole!

    Reply

    • G-Man

      |

      @ Mike,

      No doubt you will continue showing everyone how impotent you are with a lack of substantive replies, but you really should have stuck with one-syllable single-word responses. With such a reduction in the number of words you can use, there is much less risk for you to make as big a fool of yourself as you usually do.

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    FAIL

    Reply

    • G-Man

      |

      @ Mike,

      Well at least you’ve managed to reduce your nonsense down to one word syllables. Thanks for sparing us the rest of your liberal rhetoric.

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    You FAILED again!

    Reply

    • G-Mail

      |

      @ Mike

      Just because you think a thing is so, doesn’t make it so. Your inability to discern a reality is detrimental to you and of no concern to me. You are harmless to anyone except to yourself and maybe those around you. Otherwise you are nothing but a fly on the wall to anyone else. Essentially inconsequential really.

      Next…

      Reply

  • Mike

    |

    I’m still waiting for your winning plan. Because all of your previous ones FAILED miserably!

    Reply

    • G-Man

      |

      @ Mike

      Though it is blatantly obvious to anyone but you, it is no surprise you are still waiting for something that has been in your face with each and every one of my responses. But just as a liberal always is, you wouldn’t know what success looked like if it dropped in your lap. You are all too busy trying to figure out where your next freebie hand-out will be coming from. Your condition is quite sad that you will forever be waiting for someone else to live your life for you and make all your decisions. If you knew any better, you’d know you lost this argument way back when you unwittingly set yourself up and insulted your own father.

      Next…

      Reply

    • SYZORAX

      |

      BOY’S ,BOY’S! Calm down! If you continue this feud your only showing your lack of maturity and education! What were looking for is real meaningful insight! Thank You!
      Save that type of behavior for a Michael Bloomberg press conference!

      Reply

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