Oklahoma Senator Pushes To End Federally Subsidized Cell Phone Program
OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe filed legislation to end a welfare subsidy called Lifeline, which provides free cell phones to the poor.
Over the last year, 6 Investigates has exposed multiple problems with the Lifeline program and now the senator is taking note.
Inhofe acknowledged the fact that the Lifeline program has become riddled with fraud and abuse; something we have exposed in our investigations of cell phone tents around Oklahoma. We uncovered all kinds of fraud, including unqualified people receiving the subsidized phones and even homeless shelter residents hoarding duffle bags full of phones to sell on the black market.
In a statement, Inhofe said, "It is unfortunate when these programs become so expansive that it no longer addresses its primary mission to help those with the most dire needs."
He said this legislation will protect taxpayers from further excessive government spending.
So, just how much money are we talking about here? How much does the program cost us?
Last year, the federal government subsidized $2.1 billion worth of phones, and Oklahoma was the number one recipient.