Obamacare, Where Fraudulent Enrollment is Common

Sheesh, yet another federal program where fraud runs deep. What say you Democrats, the ONLY one’s that voted for this law?

The real question is, were some groups told to enroll fraudulently to peak the numbers for the sake of false success?


A coalition of 10 organizations has filed an ethics complaint calling for an investigation into whether senators and their staff committed fraud when they submitted applications to the health insurance exchange in Washington, D.C.

The Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, the lobbying arm of the nonpartisan watchdog group Citizens Against Government Waste, led the coalition in filing the complaint to the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. The organizations involved are calling for an investigation into whether members of Congress and their staff violated laws by claiming to be a “small business” in order to buy their insurance and qualify for taxpayer-funded subsidies. Read more here.


Phony applicants that investigators signed up last year under President Obama’s health care law got automatically re-enrolled for 2015. Some were rewarded with even bigger taxpayer subsidies for their insurance premiums, a congressional probe has found.

The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office says 11 counterfeit characters that its investigators created last year were automatically re-enrolled by HealthCare.gov. In Obama’s terms, they got to keep the coverage they had.

Six of those later were flagged and sent termination notices. But GAO said it was able to get five of them reinstated, by calling HealthCare.gov’s consumer service center. The five even got their monthly subsidies bumped up a bit, although GAO did not ask for it. The case of the sixth fake enrollee was under review.

HealthCare.gov does not appear to be set up to detect fraud, GAO audits and investigations chief Seto Bagdoyan said in prepared testimony for a Senate Finance Committee hearing Thursday. A copy was provided to The Associated Press.

HealthCare.gov’s document-processing contractor “is not required to seek to detect fraud,” said Bagdoyan. “The contractor personnel involved in the document-verification process are not trained as fraud experts and do not perform antifraud duties.”

Administration officials told GAO there has been “no indication of a meaningful level of fraud” in the program, Bagdoyan said.

Federal health care subsidies go directly to insurers, so the money does not end up in the bank accounts of individual enrollees. But health insurance is a valuable product in and of itself, with the cost of family coverage averaging close to $17,000 a year.

Finance Committee chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said the GAO’s investigation reveals “negligence” by the Obama administration, which “calls into question the legitimacy of the health law’s enrollment numbers and challenges the integrity of the website’s security checks.”

Last year, when GAO first disclosed that it had succeeded in signing up fake beneficiaries, the administration said it would work to strengthen HealthCare.gov’s verification checks. Administration officials had no initial comment Wednesday on GAO’s latest findings.

HealthCare.gov is an online insurance marketplace used by residents of 37 states to get subsidized private coverage under the health care law.

Although the administration has terminated coverage for more than 200,000 people who could not prove their citizenship or legal immigrant status, and some 300,000 have had their subsidies changed because of discrepancies over reported income, GAO’s bogus beneficiaries largely evaded that dragnet.

It’s unclear whether the fictitious enrollees would have been kicked out of the program eventually. For example, no tax returns were filed on behalf of any of them. Since health insurance subsidies are income-based, tax returns are one of the main ways the government checks applicants.

GAO’s investigation also uncovered a problem that bedevils millions of real people dealing with the program’s new bureaucracy: confusing and inaccurate communication.

Investigators said their bogus enrollees received unclear correspondence that failed to identify the problems with their applications.

“Rather than stating a message directly, correspondence instead was conditional or nonspecific, stating the applicant may be affected by something, and then leaving it to the applicant to parse through details to see if they were indeed affected,” said Bagdoyan.

The fake enrollees also got some perplexing instructions from HealthCare.gov. Eight of the 11 were asked to submit additional documentation to prove their citizenship and identity. But the list of suitable paperwork detailed documents for verifying income instead.

About 10 million are getting coverage this year through HealthCare.gov and state health insurance markets. GAO said the results of its undercover testing, while illustrative, cannot be generalized to the full population of applicants and enrollees.

Consequences of JPOA with Iran are Being Realized

It may be real apparent that even the military and Washington DC has not measured all the consequences of the Joint Plan of Action nuclear deal with Iran.

Just for grins, this is the written and verbal text of the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power declaration to the UN this morning to the Security Council, it is full of lies.

U.K. Lifts Export Bans on Arms to Israel

The United Kingdom has lifted all remaining restrictions on arms sales to Israel, according to The Independent. Over the past year, the U.K. government conducted a review of export licenses in light of Operation Protective Edge in Gaza.


Washington Examiner: NORAD is not taking any chances by working some air exercises to test missile defense systems, one of which is scheduled for Washington DC this week.

Civil Air Patrol aircraft and a military helicopter will be flying over D.C. between midnight and 2 a.m. Tuesday night into Wednesday morning as part of an exercise designed to hone NORAD’s intercept operations.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command and its geographical component, the Continental United States NORAD Region (CONR), have been conducting these exercises in the U.S. and Canada since the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on U.S. soil.

This particular exercise, called Falcon Virgo 15-10, is part of a series of flights run in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Capital Region (NCR) Coordination Center, the Joint Air Defense Operations Center (JADOC), Civil Air Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard and CONR’s Eastern Air Defense Sector, CONR officials said in a statement Sunday.

“Exercise Falcon Virgo is designed to hone NORAD’s intercept and identification operations as well as operationally test the NCR Visual Warning System and training personnel at the JADOC. Civil Air Patrol aircraft and a U.S. Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter will participate in the exercise,” CONR said.
From Times of Israel in part: Tehran has announced they WILL NOT CHANGE THEIR BEHAVIOR TOWARDS THE WEST OR ISRAEL

US President Barack Obama says the vote at the UN Security Council sends a “clear message: that the deal with Iran is a path forward.

Germany and Iran soon will hold their first economic conference in a decade in the wake of a deal with world powers over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program, Iran’s state-run news agency reports.

However, the top German official in a delegation visiting Tehran warned Iran that threatening Israel and not respecting human rights could damage these nascent economic efforts.

Then comes India

Gatestone Institute: India’s Foreign Ministry and media welcomed the Iran deal, much as their counterparts in Western capitals did. But country’s defence establishment and business community are raising their concerns about the newly negotiated deal with Iran.

Recent defence procurements show that India is preparing for a destabilizing Middle East. In the run-up to the Iran deal, India has been ramping up its missile defence capabilities, including building a comprehensive missile defence shield capable of intercepting a ballistic missile fired from a range of 5,000 km — effectively covering the South China Sea and the Persian Gulf region.

India has good reason to be concerned about an Iranian windfall from its oil trade financing Shia militancy across the Muslim world. The Iranian ascendancy could intensify the Shia-Sunni fight for the control of political Islam and spill over into India’s Kashmir region and beyond.

India’s primary concern, however, remains neighbouring Pakistan.

As this nuclear deal sets a Shiite Iran on the highway to a nuclear bomb, rival Sunni-Arab nations are getting jittery about the prospect of living in an Iranian-dominated Middle East.

Pakistan would be the preferred one-stop shop from Sunni-Arab nations to acquire a “turnkey” nuclear bomb. Saudi Arabia has apparently financed Pakistan’s clandestine nuclear program for decades and hopes get an “off the shelf” nuclear bomb in return. U.S. President Barack Obama might be right about not allowing a nuclear Iran “on his watch,” but after he leaves the White House — and because of him — the nuclear landscape of the Middle East might be “radiating” like a pinball machine.

The multi-billion dollar nuclear deals between Pakistan and Sunni-Arab nations will be brokered by the Pakistani Army, and the money will largely go to fund Islamist infrastructure and jihadist insurgencies in Kashmir and beyond.

The Iran deal also ends India’s hopes of oil exploration in Iran. Major Western powers such as Germany and France, which pushed for an agreement, will be lining up to secure trade concessions from Iran in return for removing sanctions and watering down restrictions.

Indians will not be playing in that club of Oil Majors — it will be forced to take a back seat. Political commentators in India who may have hoped for unrestricted access to Iranian cheap oil after the lifting of sanctions, have not factored in that the French and the Germans are eying the same oil reserves.

Both Islamic State (ISIS) and Al Qaeda have repeated their calls for jihad on India. With ISIS in Syria having paraded a captured Scud missile that is capable of carrying a tactical nuclear warhead, it doesn’t take much imagination to picture a nuclear-armed Arab state falling to Islamic State or its affiliates.

Islamic State jihadists parade a mobile-launched Scud tactical ballistic missile, captured from Syrian regime forces, through their capital of Raqaa in June 2014.

The best India can do is to hedge its bets, secure its borders and strengthen its defences.

Like Israel, India too must realize that it is on its own. The Western powers that negotiated the Iran deal have demonstrated that they lack the conviction and resolve to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons — or prevent Arab countries from acquiring nuclear weapons of their own.

And with President Obama shrinking America’s “footprint” in the world, this time the cavalry might not be coming.



UN Voted FOR the Iran Deal Before Congress

Secretary of Defense, Ash Carter is on a 3 country tour in the Middle East, Israel, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. War gaming on some plan?

This cannot end well.

Israeli Defense Force:

The IDF is seeking government commitment to a multi-year defense spending plan – a commitment that has been absent for the past several years – as it prepares to deal with the possibility of a covert Iranian attempt to break through to nuclear weapons production, a senior defense source said on Sunday.

The source said the IDF needs to assume that its most severe “reference scenarios” regarding Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, and ISIS will come true, in order to correctly use the coming years to reshape the military, improve training, and make cost cutting reforms that include the shedding of 100,000 reservists and 5000 career soldiers.

The multi-year budget commitment from the government –  absent for the past several years – will be necessary to reshape the military and improve training to meet those challenges while at the same time, implementing cutting reforms that include the shedding of 100,000 reservists and 5000 career soldiers.

Other proposed changes include military restructuring to create specialized war fighting and border security divisions that do not overlap one another.


UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Monday unanimously endorsed the landmark nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers and authorized a series of measures leading to the end of U.N. sanctions that have hurt Iran’s economy.

But the measure also provides a mechanism for U.N. sanctions to “snap back” in place if Iran fails to meet its obligations.

The resolution had been agreed to by the five veto-wielding council members, who along with Germany negotiated the nuclear deal with Iran. It was co-sponsored by all 15 members of the Security Council.

Under the agreement, Iran’s nuclear program will be curbed for a decade in exchange for potentially hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of relief from international sanctions. Many key penalties on the Iranian economy, such as those related to the energy and financial sectors, could be lifted by the end of the year.

The document specifies that seven resolutions related to U.N. sanctions will be terminated when Iran has completed a series of major steps to curb its nuclear program and the International Atomic Energy Agency has concluded that “all nuclear material in Iran remains in peaceful activities.”

All provisions of the U.N. resolution will terminate in 10 years, including the snap back provision.

But last week the six major powers — the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany — and the European Union sent a letter, seen by The Associated Press, informing U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that they have agreed to extend the snap back mechanism for an additional five years. They asked Ban to send the letter to the Security Council.

U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power said the nuclear deal doesn’t change the United States’ “profound concern about human rights violations committed by the Iranian government or about the instability Iran fuels beyond its nuclear program, from its support for terrorist proxies to repeated threats against Israel to its other destabilizing activities in the region.”

She urged Iran to release three “unjustly imprisoned” Americans and to determine the whereabouts of Robert Levinson, a former FBI agent who vanished in 2007.

“But denying Iran a nuclear weapon is important not in spite of these other destabilizing actions but rather because of them,” Power said.

She quoted President Barack Obama saying the United States agreed to the deal because “an Iran with a nuclear weapon would be far more destabilizing and far more dangerous to our friends and to the world.”

Embassies Open Today, the Cuban Flag Flies in DC

A cop killer who fled to Cuba is not part of the deal that the White House or the State Department with the normalized relations with Cuba.

Despite New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s aggravated pleas to President Obama to have Assata Shakur extradited back to the United States, Cuba’s head of North American affairs, Josefina Vidal, has denied that request.

Shakur, formerly known as Joanne Chesimard, was a member of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army (BLA).  She became the first woman to ever be placed on the FBI’s most-wanted list for her involvement in a 1973 shootout in which New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster was killed. Shakur was eventually sentenced to life in prison in 1977; however, she managed to flee the cement walls of the penitentiary in 1979, and later fled to Cuba where she was granted political asylum.

Shakur currently remains on the FBI’s most-wanted list and has a bounty of $2 million offered for her capture.  Since President Obama has been attempting to normalize relations with Cuba, NJ Governor Chris Christie has adamantly requested that Obama demand Shakur be extradited to America as a part of Cuba and the United States’ new beginning.  However, Josefina Vidal has denied Cuba’s agreement to hand over Shakur.

“We’ve explained to the U.S. government in the past that there are some people living in Cuba to whom Cuba has legitimately granted political asylum,” Vidal stated.  “There’s no extradition treaty in effect between Cuba and the U.S.  We’ve reminded the U.S. government that in its country they’ve given shelter to dozens and dozens of Cuban citizens.  Some of them accused of horrible crimes, some accused of terrorism, murder and kidnapping, and in every case the U.S. government has decided to welcome them.”

After 54 Years From Stars and Stripes:

The last time the United States and Cuba had diplomatic relations, Dwight Eisenhower was in the White House, Elvis Presley’s “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” topped the charts and a new dance craze, the Twist, was sweeping the country.

The past half-century of U.S.-Cuba relations has been a roller-coaster ride of high hopes for improvement at times, but low points that included mutual acts of terrorism, separation of Cuban families, CIA attempts to kill Fidel Castro, the most dangerous days of the Cold War during the Cuban Missile Crisis, a U.S.-sponsored invasion, Cuba’s alignment with the old Soviet bloc, confiscation of U.S. property, the 1996 shootdown of two Brothers to the Rescue planes by Cuban MiGs, and countless human tragedies on a smaller scale.

The US and Cuba will re-establish diplomatic relations Monday and their embassies will reopen for the first time in 54 years.

On Monday morning, the Cuban government will raise its flag over the its old limestone building on Washington’s 16th Street Northwest, which has been a Cuban Embassy, a Cuban Interests Section in the absence of diplomatic relations, and now again an embassy. Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez will be the highest-ranking Cuban diplomat to visit the State Department in decades when he meets with Secretary of State John Kerry in the afternoon.

For the United States, it begins a new chapter of engagement with Cuba. Kerry plans to travel to Havana later this summer to inaugurate the U.S. Embassy. The interests section will be elevated to embassy status Monday, but US flag won’t fly until Kerry’s arrival.

The respective mission chiefs in Havana and Washington will become chargés d’affaires at the new embassies until ambassadors are named, and new rules for operations at the embassies will take effect.

Even as the Cuban flag is hoisted in Washington, a difficult relationship between the United States and Cuba is expected to remain just that — difficult — but with the difference that the two sides are now talking more freely with each other to work through the many issues that still separate them.

“That will include America’s enduring support for universal values, like freedom of speech and assembly, and the ability to access information,” President Barack Obama said on July 1 when he announced the date for restoring diplomatic ties.

“When the United States shuttered our embassy in 1961, I don’t think anyone expected that it would be more than half a century before it reopened,” Obama said. The old policy of isolation, he said, “shuts America out of Cuba’s future, and it only makes life worse for the Cuban people.”

Roberta Jacobson, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs –– who was the lead U.S. negotiator in normalization talks –– said there is an “obvious groundswell of support” among Cubans on the island for the new policy. But during an appearance at the Wilson Center in Washington in June, Jacobson said Cubans’ very high expectations “must be managed. Because let’s face it, things aren’t going to change overnight.”

The United States officially broke relations with Cuba on Jan. 3, 1961, but they had begun to turn sour within six months of New Year’s Day 1959, when the Cuban Revolution triumphed.

By August 1960, Cuba had expropriated all U.S.-owned industrial and agricultural holdings, and nationalized all U.S. banks. That fall, Eisenhower had begun to phase in the U.S. trade embargo, and in December he eliminated Cuba’s sugar quota for the next quarter. In the last months of 1960, as Cuba complained of air raids coming from the United States and, plans to invade the island were already under discussion in Washington.

Months before Eisenhower decided to break with Cuba, personnel at the U.S. Embassy had been instructed to cut down to two suitcases in case a hasty departure was necessary, said Wayne Smith, then a junior officer at the embassy and later the chief of mission in 1977 when the United States established an interests section in the old embassy building.

“Things had been going so badly; it was inevitable,” Smith said. “It was almost a relief. Relations had been so strained and so bitter and we knew it was coming. But I remember thinking, ‘Let’s hope it won’t be for too long.’”

The tipping point came on Jan. 2, 1961, when Cuban Foreign Minister Raul Roa, speaking before the United Nations Security Council, charged that the United States was planning to invade, and Fidel Castro gave a speech in which he denounced the U.S. Embassy as a “nest of spies” and demanded that the staff be reduced to 11 people, including U.S. diplomats, Marine guards and local employees.

The next day the White House broke off relations with Cuba and asked the Swiss government to represent it in dealings with the island. That representation will end on Monday. Since 1977, when the United States once again sent diplomats to Havana, there hasn’t been much of a role for the Swiss. But from 1961 and 1977, the Swiss ambassador was the U.S. man in Havana.

Because the Swiss were overseeing U.S. interests in Cuba, the old U.S. Embassy building never really closed.

There was only that Swiss representation in Havana four months later during the failed Bay of Pigs invasion and during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, the height of the Cold War. Those 13 days in October would be among the most perilous in the U.S.-Cuban relationship, but for most of the next five decades U.S.-Cuba relations remained rocky.

That is until Dec. 17, when Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro announced an opening — the fruit of 18 months of secret negotiations — that included re-establishing diplomatic relations and converting the interests sections into full-fledged embassies.

Rodriguez, who will arrive in Washington Sunday, will lead a 30-person delegation that includes former National Assembly President Ricardo Alarcon, National Assembly Vice President Ana Maria Mari Machado and Josefina Vidal, Jacobson’s Cuban counterpart in the normalization talks.

Other delegation members will be Havana historian Eusebio Leal, members of the Council of State, Ramon Sanchez Parodi, the first head of the Cuban Interests Section; singer Silvio Rodriguez, artist Alexis Leiva (Kcho) who provides a free public Wi-Fi hotspot at his studio, and other figures from the Cuban art and literary world.

Receiving Social Security Benefits Mentally Unfit for Guns

There are a few databases that are mined for background checks for those applying to own a weapon, never before has the background check include being a Social Security beneficiary.

If Obama has his way and he often does, he considers receiving social security benefits as being a challenge to your mental capacity for failing to manage your own financial affairs.    LET THAT SINK IN

Obama is about attaching a new label to those who have protections under the 2nd Amendment to own a weapon, yet in his psyche, you are mentally unfit already. Next if you are receiving VA benefits, you are classified as unfit to own a weapon.  OH WAIT…

Yes, there are countless people out there that are mentally unfit and should not own a weapon and there are those that just steal weapons from others. But checking the social security database and then government makes the judgment?

Obama pushes to extend gun background checks to Social Security

LA Times:

Seeking tighter controls over firearm purchases, the Obama administration is pushing to ban Social Security beneficiaries from owning guns if they lack the mental capacity to manage their own affairs, a move that could affect millions whose monthly disability payments are handled by others.

The push is intended to bring the Social Security Administration in line with laws regulating who gets reported to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS, which is used to prevent gun sales to felons, drug addicts, immigrants in the country illegally and others.

A potentially large group within Social Security are people who, in the language of federal gun laws, are unable to manage their own affairs due to “marked subnormal intelligence, or mental illness, incompetency, condition, or disease.”

There is no simple way to identify that group, but a strategy used by the Department of Veterans Affairs since the creation of the background check system is reporting anyone who has been declared incompetent to manage pension or disability payments and assigned a fiduciary.

If Social Security, which has never participated in the background check system, uses the same standard as the VA, millions of its beneficiaries would be affected. About 4.2 million adults receive monthly benefits that are managed by “representative payees.”

The move is part of a concerted effort by the Obama administration after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn., to strengthen gun control, including by plugging holes in the background check system.

But critics — including gun rights activists, mental health experts and advocates for the disabled — say that expanding the list of prohibited gun owners based on financial competence is wrongheaded.

Though such a ban would keep at least some people who pose a danger to themselves or others from owning guns, the strategy undoubtedly would also include numerous people who may just have a bad memory or difficulty balancing a checkbook, the critics argue.

“Someone can be incapable of managing their funds but not be dangerous, violent or unsafe,” said Dr. Marc Rosen, a Yale psychiatrist who has studied how veterans with mental health problems manage their money. “They are very different determinations.”

Steven Overman, a 30-year-old former Marine who lives in Virginia, said his case demonstrates the flaws of judging gun safety through financial competence.

After his Humvee hit a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2007, he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and a brain injury that weakened his memory and cognitive ability.

The VA eventually deemed him 100% disabled and after reviewing his case in 2012 declared him incompetent, making his wife his fiduciary.

Upon being notified that he was being reported to the background check system, he gave his guns to his mother and began working with a lawyer to get them back.

Overman grew up hunting in Wisconsin. After his return from Iraq, he found solace in target shooting. “It’s relaxing to me,” he said. “It’s a break from day-to-day life. It calms me down.”

Though his wife had managed their financial affairs since his deployment, Overman said he has never felt like he was a danger to himself or others.

“I didn’t know the VA could take away your guns,” he said.

The background check system was created in 1993 by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, named after White House Press Secretary James Brady, who was partially paralyzed after being shot in the 1981 assassination attempt on President Reagan.

The law requires gun stores to run the names of prospective buyers through the computerized system before every sale.

The system’s databases contain more than 13 million records, which include the names of felons, immigrants in the U.S. illegally, fugitives, dishonorably discharged service members, drug addicts and domestic abusers.

State agencies, local police and federal agencies are required to enter names into the databases, but the system has been hampered by loopholes and inconsistent reporting since its launch.

The shortcomings became clear in the wake of the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting, in which Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people. Cho had been declared mentally ill by a court and ordered to undergo outpatient treatment, but at the time the law did not require that he be added to the databases.

Congress expanded the reporting requirements, but Social Security determined it was not required to submit records, according to LaVenia LaVelle, an agency spokeswoman.

After 20-year-old Adam Lanza killed his mother, 20 children and six school staffers in Newtown in 2012, President Obama vowed to make gun control a central issue of his second term.

The effort fell flat. Congress ultimately rejected his proposals for new gun control legislation.

But among 23 executive orders on the issue was one to the Department of Justice to ensure that federal agencies were complying with the existing law on reporting to the background check system.

One baseline for other agencies is the VA, which has been entering names into the system since the beginning. About 177,000 veterans and survivors of veterans are in the system, according to VA figures.

The VA reports names under a category in gun control regulations known as “adjudicated as a mental defective,” terminology that derives from decades-old laws. Its only criterion is whether somebody has been appointed a fiduciary.

More than half of the names on the VA list are of people 80 or older, often suffering from dementia, a reasonable criterion for prohibiting gun ownership.

But the category also includes anybody found by a “court, board, commission or other lawful authority” to be lacking “the mental capacity to contract or manage his own affairs” for a wide variety of reasons.

The agency’s efforts have been criticized by a variety of groups.

Rosen, the Yale psychiatrist, said some veterans may avoid seeking help for mental health problems out of fear that they would be required to give up their guns.

Conservative groups have denounced the policy as an excuse to strip veterans of their gun rights.

Republicans have introduced legislation in the last several sessions of Congress to change the policy. The Veterans Second Amendment Protection Act, now under consideration in the House, would require a court to determine that somebody poses a danger before being reported to the background check system.

Social Security would generally report names under the same “mental defective” category. The agency is still figuring out how that definition should be applied, LaVelle said.

About 2.7 million people are now receiving disability payments from Social Security for mental health problems, a potentially higher risk category for gun ownership. An addition 1.5 million have their finances handled by others for a variety of reasons.

The agency has been drafting its policy outside of public view. Even the National Rifle Assn. was unaware of it.

Told about the initiative, the NRA issued a statement from its chief lobbyist, Chris W. Cox, saying: “If the Obama administration attempts to deny millions of law-abiding citizens their constitutional rights by executive fiat, the NRA stands ready to pursue all available avenues to stop them in their tracks.”

Gun rights advocates are unlikely to be the only opponents.

Ari Ne’eman, a member of the National Council on Disability, said the independent federal agency would oppose any policy that used assignment of a representative payee as a basis to take any fundamental right from people with disabilities.

“The rep payee is an extraordinarily broad brush,” he said.

Since 2008, VA beneficiaries have been able to get off the list by filing an appeal and demonstrating that they pose no danger to themselves or others.

But as of April, just nine of 298 appeals have been granted, according to data provided by the VA. Thirteen others were pending, and 44 were withdrawn after the VA overturned its determination of financial incompetence.

Overman is one of the few who decided to appeal.

He is irritable and antisocial, he said, but not dangerous. “I’ve never been suicidal,” he said. “To me that solves nothing.”

More than a year and a half after Overman filed his challenge, the VA lifted its incompetence ruling, allowing his removal from the background check system before the VA ever had to determine whether he should be trusted with a gun.

Overman, who hasn’t worked since leaving the military, said he and a friend are now thinking of opening a gunsmith business.