Obama’s Social Security Number

One of the favorite Birther claims is that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma is using a Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber that was some­how fraud­u­lent­ly stolen from a man who was born in Con­necti­cut in 1890. Like all birther lies, this one is refut­ed by the evi­dence.

1. Was Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber issued in Con­necti­cut?

2. Was Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber issued to a man born in 1890? 

2a. The Susan Daniels Affi­davit — The Basis for this Birther Lie

2b. Jean Paul Lud­wig, born in 1890 (Added 3/23/2012)

3. Does E‑Verify say Oba­ma’s SSN is fraud­u­lent? The Hol­lis­ter Inci­dents


1. Was Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber issued in Con­necti­cut?

CLAIM: Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber was issued for a state he nev­er lived in. 

TRUTH: Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber (if he has­n’t been issued a new one since his orig­i­nal one was spread all over the Inter­net) begins with the dig­its 042. While this is ordi­nar­i­ly an indi­ca­tion that the num­ber was issued to some­one liv­ing in Con­necti­cut, the Social Secu­ri­ty Admin­is­tra­tion says:

One should not make too much of the “geo­graph­i­cal code.” It is not meant to be any kind of use­able geo­graph­i­cal infor­ma­tion. The num­ber­ing scheme was designed in 1936 (before com­put­ers) to make it eas­i­er for SSA to store the appli­ca­tions in our files in Bal­ti­more since the files were orga­nized by regions as well as alpha­bet­i­cal­ly. It was real­ly just a book­keep­ing device for our own inter­nal use and was nev­er intend­ed to be any­thing more than that.

Orly Taitz recent­ly received, in response to an FOIA request, the SS‑5 (Appli­ca­tion for Social Secu­ri­ty Card) of a man who appears in the Social Secu­ri­ty death index with a num­ber just one dig­it low­er than Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s. This man, Thomas Wood, was born in 1962 and died in 1981. The SS‑5 showed he had request­ed his Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber on March 21, 1977. Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s num­ber was prob­a­bly issued the same day. It is per­fect­ly rea­son­able that a high school sopho­more would be request­ing a Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber in the spring, while get­ting ready to start a sum­mer job at Baskin Rob­bins.

The first three dig­its of a Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber at that time were called the “Area Num­ber”. And it’s true that the Area Num­ber 042 is nor­mal­ly issued for peo­ple who live in Con­necti­cut (or apply for the Social Secu­ri­ty card with a mail­ing address in Con­necti­cut). Pres­i­dent Oba­ma lived in Hawaii in 1977, while attend­ing Puna­hou School. He attend­ed Puna­houfrom the fifth grade until grad­u­at­ing in 1979, and his first job was at the Baskin Rob­bins at the cor­ner of King and Puna­hou Streets in Hon­olu­lu.

So how did Pres­i­dent Oba­ma get a Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber with an Area Num­ber reflect­ing res­i­dence (or mail­ing address) in Con­necti­cut?

Most like­ly, this was due to a cler­i­cal error. At the time, Pres­i­dent Oba­ma was only 15 years old, and lived with his grand­par­ents in an address on Bere­ta­nia Street. The President’s house in Hawaii was in zip code 96814 and the zip code for Dan­bury, CT. is 06814. Since the ‘0’ and ‘9′ on a typ­i­cal type­writer are imme­di­ate­ly adja­cent (remem­ber, the pres­i­den­t’s Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber was issued in 1977, when data entry was via key­punch and data cards), it would have been a com­mon error to acci­dent­ly type a ‘0′ when the ZIP code real­ly began with a ‘9′. Anoth­er pos­si­bil­i­ty is that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma, a left-hand­ed 15 year old boy at the time, may have writ­ten his own ZIP code in a less-than-ful­ly-leg­i­ble man­ner, mak­ing the ‘9′ look some­what like a ‘0’. 

In a let­ter to Inves­ti­ga­tor Susan Daniels, the Social Secu­ri­ty Admini­a­tra­tion said (ADDED 6/6/2012)

Dear Ms. Daniels:

This let­ter is in response to your let­ter to Com­mis­sion­er Astrue con­cern­ing Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Records.

After review­ing the infor­ma­tion you pro­vid­ed, we dis­agree with your con­clu­sion that a per­son­’s Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber depends upon the address of res­i­dence. Fur­ther­more, we do not have infor­ma­tion relat­ed to your ques­tion regard­ing the num­ber­ing of Selec­tive Ser­vice forms. Please direct ques­tions regard­ing a Selec­tive Ser­vice form (SSS form 3B) to the Selec­tive Ser­vice Sys­tem.


Frank Biro
Act­ing Asso­ciate Com­mis­sion­er
Office of Pub­lic Inquiries

In any event, there is no evi­dence what­ev­er that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s Social Securiy num­ber was obtained by fraud.

For a far more detailed dis­cus­sion of this issue, please read this top­ic in our forum.

2. Was Oba­ma’s Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber issued to a man born in 1890?

2a. The Susan Daniels Affi­davit — The Basis for the Birther Lie

CLAIM: The num­ber issued to Barack Oba­ma was issued to a man born in 1890. His grand­moth­er worked in the Hawaii Pro­bate Court and had access to Social Secu­ri­ty Num­bers of dead peo­ple, so she stole one for Bar­ry.  

TRUTH: The com­plete affi­davit signed by Susan Daniels in the Bar­nett v. Oba­ma case is at the bot­tom of this page. As you can see on p. 5 of the affi­davit, the num­ber “1890” appears with­out expla­na­tion, just above two dates. It does not say the Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber of Pres­i­dent Oba­ma was issued to a man born in 1890. It does not say any­thing about a man born in the year 1890. It’s not even clear­ly intend­ed to be a date, as the two num­bers below it are. It is just a num­ber on the page.

Nev­er­the­less, the birthers, led by deranged lunatic Orly Taitz and based upon this record, decid­ed to fab­ri­cate the lie that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s birth cer­tifi­cate was issued to a male (why not a female?) who was born in 1890.

In the detailed report on pages 6–13, we can see where the 1890 date comes from. From 1988 to 1991, Barack Oba­ma attend­ed Har­vard Law School and lived in a base­ment apart­ment at 365 Broad­way in Somerville, MA. There are NINE entries for this Somerville address. All are the SSN num­ber end­ing in 4425. DOB: 4 are 8/4/1961, 1 for 4/8/1961, 2 have no DOB, 1 has 1990, 1 has 1890. [note — pre-Y2K most dates in the US were writ­ten as MM/DD/YY. The Y2K con­ver­sion forced old­er data to con­form to MM/DD/YYYY. It’s easy to see how 1890 and 1990 could be the same num­ber 

This is a prime exam­ple of why these data­bas­es are mere­ly the start­ing point for an inves­ti­ga­tion. A ratio­nal per­son might look at those entries and con­clude that 4/8/1961 is an entry error and the two incom­plete entries are bad data giv­en the strong cor­re­la­tion between the 8/4/1961 and the SSN in oth­er entries. They would move on to the next set of address­es. Birthers, how­ev­er, see the same data and con­clude the num­ber was stolen from a guy born in 1890. 

Added 7/5/2012: (Thanks to OhForGoodnessSakes.com for this item.)

In an arti­cle on a web site for intel­li­gence pro­fes­sion­als, dat­ed July 8, 2008, called “Sub­jects with Mul­ti­ple SSN’s,” Daniels was much more hon­est in her eval­u­a­tion of the accu­ra­cy of results in the kind of search she lat­er did in her Birther capac­i­ty:

In Cana­da, it is rare to find some­body with two Social Insur­ance Num­bers (SIN). Where this hap­pens it may be a case of cler­i­cal error or a ref­er­ence to a for­mer SIN appro­pri­at­ed by an iden­ti­ty thief. The for­mer rea­son is extreme­ly rare. In thir­ty years I have only encoun­tered this once. The Cana­di­an SIN is used as an iden­ti­fi­er less than the SSN is in the USA.

How­ev­er, in the USA the case is some­what dif­fer­ent. Accord­ing to Susan Daniels, of Daniels and Asso­ciates Inves­ti­ga­tions, Inc. in Chardon Ohio, when search­ing through data­base aggre­ga­tors such as IRB, it is com­mon to find a sub­ject ref­er­enced with two or three Social Secu­ri­ty Num­bers (SSN). Here are some of the rea­sons a per­son may show-up with mul­ti­ple SSN’s:

* a wife’s or child’s SSN could end up with father’s name
* a parent’s SSN could show up with a child
* the sub­ject bought some­thing with some­one else and the SSNs could end up with each other’s name
* the data­base pro­duc­er is relat­ing sev­er­al SSN’s to one address
* an error by who­ev­er entered the data

Susan Daniels of Daniels and Asso­ciates Inves­ti­ga­tions, Inc. (9754 Thwing Road Chardon, OH 44024, Tel.:440.286.4072) has been a Pri­vate Inves­ti­ga­tor for 15 years.

Susan Daniels should be ashamed and embar­rassed, real­ly she should. 

2b. A Man born in 19890: Jean Paul Lud­wig  Added 3/23/2012

CLAIM: An inten­sive inves­ti­ga­tion has revealed the iden­ti­ty of the man whose Social Secu­ri­ty Num­ber (SSN) is being used by Pres­i­dent Oba­ma was Jean Paul Lud­wig who was born in France in 1890, immi­grat­ed to the Unit­ed States in 1924, and was assigned SSN 042-xx-xxxx ( Oba­ma’s cur­rent SSN ) rec’d on or about March 1977. Lud­wig spent the final months of his life in Hawaii, where he died.

Con­ve­nient­ly, Oba­ma’s grand­moth­er, Made­lyn Payne Dun­ham, worked part-time in the Pro­bate Office in the Hon­olu­lu Hawaii Cour­t­house, and there­fore had access to the SSNs of deceased indi­vid­u­als.

The Social Secu­ri­ty Admin­is­tra­tion was nev­er informed of Lud­wig’s death, and because he nev­er received Social Secu­ri­ty ben­e­fits there were no ben­e­fits to
stop and there­fore, no ques­tions were ever raised. 

SSN Death Index

TRUTH: Jean Paul Lud­wig is in the Social Secu­ri­ty Death Index. You can check it your­self at http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=3693

Lud­wig’s SSN is 045–26-8722,  not the same as Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s, which is SSN 042-xx-xxxx. Image and more at ObamaConspiracy.org. 

Lud­wig died in 1981 and his SSN was issued in 1951. Oba­ma’s num­ber shows it was issued in 1977.

Made­lyn Dun­ham vol­un­teered in the Pro­bate Court start­ing in 1986, after she retired. She also did­n’t work with wills and dead peo­ple. She worked Oahu Cir­cuit Court, where she served as a court observ­er, pro­bate aide and arbi­tra­tor for the Juve­nile Mon­e­tary Resti­tu­tion Pro­gram. Sto­ry here. 

Falsehoods Unchallenged Only Fester and Grow