United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fayetteville Division
ERIN L. WIEDEMANN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Vernon Bailey, brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 405(g), seeking judicial review of a decision of the
Commissioner of the Social Security Administration
(Commissioner) denying his claims for period of disability
and disability insurance benefits (DIB) and supplemental
security income (SSI) benefits under the provisions of Titles
II and XVI of the Social Security Act (Act). In this judicial
review, the Court must determine whether there is substantial
evidence in the administrative record to support the
Commissioner's decision. See 42 U.S.C. §
protectively filed his current applications for DIB and SSI
on June 20, 2016, alleging an inability to work since
November 20, 2014, due to degenerative disc disease; sleep
apnea; asthma; neuropathy in the left leg, hip and arm;
bipolar disorder; a bulging disc in the lower lumbar; a
history of a compression fracture in lower lumbar; psychosis;
chronic pain; and his weight. (Tr. 64, 247, 251). An
administrative video hearing was held on May 9, 2017, at
which Plaintiff appeared with counsel and testified. (Tr.
written decision dated August 18, 2017, the ALJ found that
during the relevant time period, Plaintiff had an impairment
or combination of impairments that were severe. (Tr. 1068).
Specifically, the ALJ found Plaintiff had the following
severe impairments: obesity, degenerative disc disease,
osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, cardiomegaly, diabetes, asthma,
an affective disorder and bipolar disorder. However, after
reviewing all of the evidence presented, the ALJ determined
that Plaintiff's impairments did not meet or equal the
level of severity of any impairment listed in the Listing of
Impairments found in Appendix I, Subpart P, Regulation No. 4.
(Tr. 1068). The ALJ found Plaintiff retained the residual
functional capacity (RFC) to:
perform sedentary work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(a) and
416.967(a) except the claimant is able to occasionally climb,
balance, crawl, kneel, stoop, and crouch, and frequently
finger and handle bilaterally. In addition, he must avoid
concentrated exposure to pulmonary irritants like dust,
odors, and gasses and must avoid hazards like unprotected
heights and moving machinery. He is limited to simple,
routine, and repetitive tasks in a setting where
interpersonal contact is incidental to the work performed and
can respond to supervision that is simple, direct, and
(Tr. 1069). With the help of a vocational expert, the ALJ
determined Plaintiff could perform work as a small products
assembler, a document preparer and an escort vehicle driver.
then requested a review of the hearing decision by the
Appeals Council, which denied that request on May 19, 2018.
(Tr. 1-6). Subsequently, Plaintiff filed this action. (Doc.
1). This case is before the undersigned pursuant to the
consent of the parties. (Doc. 6). Both parties have filed
appeal briefs, and the case is now ready for decision. (Docs.
Court's role is to determine whether the
Commissioner's findings are supported by substantial
evidence on the record as a whole. Ramirez v.
Barnhart, 292 F.3d 576, 583 (8th Cir. 2002). Substantial
evidence is less than a preponderance but it is enough that a
reasonable mind would find it adequate to support the
Commissioner's decision. The ALJ's decision must be
affirmed if the record contains substantial evidence to
support it. Edwards v. Barnhart, 314 F.3d 964, 966
(8th Cir. 2003). As long as there is substantial evidence in
the record that supports the Commissioner's decision, the
Court may not reverse it simply because substantial evidence
exists in the record that would have supported a contrary
outcome, or because the Court would have decided the case
differently. Haley v. Massanari, 258 F.3d 742, 747
(8th Cir. 2001). In other words, if after reviewing the
record it is possible to draw two inconsistent positions from
the evidence and one of those positions represents the
findings of the ALJ, the decision of the ALJ must be
affirmed. Young v. Apfel, 221 F.3d 1065, 1068 (8th
Court has reviewed the entire transcript and the parties'
briefs. For the reasons stated in the ALJ's well-reasoned
opinion and the Government's brief, the Court finds
Plaintiff's arguments on appeal to be without merit and
finds that the record as a whole reflects substantial
evidence to support the ALJ's decision. Accordingly, the
ALJ's decision is hereby summarily affirmed and
Plaintiff's Complaint is dismissed with prejudice.
See Sledge v. Astrue, No. 08-0089, 2008 WL 4816675
(W.D. Mo. Oct. 31, 2008) (summarily affirming ALJ's
denial of disability benefits), aff'd, 364
Fed.Appx. 307 (8th Cir. 2010).
 Andrew M. Saul, has been appointed to
serve as Commissioner of Social Security, and is substituted
as Defendant, pursuant to Rule 25(d)(1) of the Federal ...