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SSAB Urges Swift Consideration of Governor O’Malley’s Nomination as Social Security Commissioner and Amending the Social Security Act

September 6, 2023

Washington, DC – Today, Social Security Advisory Board Members wrote Senate Finance Chair Ron Wyden and Ranking Member Mike Crapo to urge the Committee to swiftly consider Governor Martin O’Malley’s nomination as Commissioner of Social Security. The Board also recommended Congress amend the Social Security Act to state that the Commissioner of Social Security once again serves at the pleasure of the President.

[Read the Full Letter]

The Board stated that after nearly 30 years, the six-year term for the Commissioner has not been successful. Since March 31, 1995, SSA has had 12 different Commissioners. Only two served nearly the full six-year term. In the past decade, SSA has had an Acting Commissioner for eight years.

The Board concluded that SSA needs the leadership authority that a Senate-confirmed Commissioner provides.


The Social Security Independence and Program Improvements Act of 1994 (Public Law No. 103-296) established a bipartisan Social Security Advisory Board composed of seven Board members appointed by Congress and the White House. Supported by a small professional staff, the Board provides advice and recommendations to the President, Congress, and the Commissioner of Social Security on matters related to the Social Security and Supplemental Security Income programs and policies.