Jan 29, 2010

A Question And An Opinion

Is it appropriate for a Commissioner of Social Security to change the agency's basic interpretation of a statute without any intervening change in the statute? I was under the impression that members of the Federalist Society such as Michael Astrue opposed reinterpreting even the Constitution which is over 200 years old. Of course, there is the recent example of Citizens United v. FEC where other members of the Federalist Society were quite happy to reinterpret the Constitution when it suited the interests of their political party.

My opinion is that if a Commissioner does not like the settled interpretation of a statute that he inherits that he should go to Congress and ask them to change the statute instead of threatening to unilaterally change that interpretation.


Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Hall:

If you have comments about DAA policy that you'd like the COSS to consider, why not submit them to the COSS? After all, isn't that the invitation?

So that's my first advice: send in your comments.

Here's my second advice: please reread the DAA teletype before you draft your comments. For discussion of what kinds of medically recognized conditions are going to count as "DAA," look at question 22 about the DSM. For discussion of how periods of sobriety come in, look at question 30.

Here's my third advice: after you make sure you're familiar with the background materials, support your speculations about SSA's planned changes with reasons. You don't have to support your speculationis, of course. There's always the option to come across as a horse's patootie.


Anonymous said...

Yes congress should reinterpret the social security act and or regulations and the administrative procedure act. Each congressman should elicit an opinion from the voters they represent.

Nosscr members could write congress to get things started.Social security determinations should be fairly or thoughtfully consider,of course not the current process.

No Saj said...

I don't see why Astrue needs to go out of his way to weigh in on this issue. What am I missing?