On Friday, bills were introduced in the House (H.R. 5706) and Senate (S. 2920) “to deny Social Security benefits and other benefits to individuals who participated in Nazi persecution”.
This sudden legislative attention to a decades-old problem stems from an Associated Press story two weeks ago about Social Security payments to Nazi war criminals. The Nazis in question immigrated to the U.S. after World War II, worked there long enough to qualify for Social Security, but then departed in the middle of Department of Justice investigations against them and then renounced their U.S. citizenship to head off the denaturalisation and deportation cases against them.
I was initially concerned that this bill might be used to attempt to deny Social Security benefits to other people who gave up citizenship, but as it turns out, the bill is written narrowly enough to target only Nazi war criminals — not even war criminals from other countries, let alone ordinary emigrants.