Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

9/27/2012 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Called 'Obama phones,' program has cost taxpayers $1.6 billion

A program to provide low-income Americans with free cell phones - including the phone, free minutes and no contracts - has recently incurred the wrath of conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh. The irascible Rush was surprised to just recently learn of the program, which has been in effect for awhile and has been dubbed by the public as "Obama phones."

'They've spent $1.6 billion, up $772 million since 2008. SafeLink is one of these free Lifeline providers (they're the biggest, in fact) and, if you get food stamps, you can get a free cell phone,' Rush Limbaugh says.

"They've spent $1.6 billion, up $772 million since 2008. SafeLink is one of these free Lifeline providers (they're the biggest, in fact) and, if you get food stamps, you can get a free cell phone," Rush Limbaugh says.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/27/2012 (2 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Free cell phones, free minutes, President Obama, Obama phones


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The federal program paid out $1.6 billion to pay for free cell phones and the monthly bills of 12.5 million wireless accounts. Overseen by the FCC and intended to help low-income Americans, the program has been a popular one. Participation in the program has risen since 2008. Initially costing $772 million for phones, since Obama, $772 million has become $1.6 billion -- more than doubled.

"But observers complain that the program suffers from poor oversight, in which phones go to people who don't qualify, and hundreds of thousands of those who do qualify have more than one phone," Limbaugh says.

"They're not smart phones at least, but that's probably coming."

The program also covers 250 free minutes each month. As many as 5.5 million residents in Pennsylvania alone could qualify for the program, which is funded primarily by the Universal Service Fund fee added to the bills of land-line and wireless customers.

"Some of these people have more than two phones, more than two accounts. That's the thing. Obama's stash. What else is in there," Limbaugh queries.

Called SafeLink, the program costs $1.6 billion from taxpayers and your phone bills, to pay for 12.5 million Americans to have free cell phones and free cell usage of 250 minutes a month. Limbaugh also says that a program, ostensibly charitable in nature, is especially blatant in trying to rope in others to take advantage of the program.

"They buy space in magazines and so forth, and this is one of the many ways in which you can apply. From the SafeLink website: 'How to qualify: If you already participate in other state or federal assistance programs such as federal public housing,' you're qualified.

"'If your total household income is at or below 135 percent of the poverty guidelines set by your state and/or the federal government...'" Sounds to me like they're trying to 'trick' poor people into getting free phones here, just like they 'tricked' people into getting mortgages. This is a trick!" Limbaugh says.

The advertisement goes on to say, "You can get an additional free 100 minutes if you recommend a friend. . Pay nothing! No bills, no contracts, no credit checks, no hidden fees."

"They've spent $1.6 billion, up $772 million since 2008. SafeLink is one of these free Lifeline providers (they're the biggest, in fact) and, if you get food stamps, you can get a free cell phone," Limbaugh says. 

Here is the Free Phone website -

https://www.safelinkwireless.com/Enrollment/Safelink/en/Public/NewHome.html

.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Blank 'green Obamacards' - up to 34 MILLION - issued prior to promised amnesty Watch

Image of Obama's high numbers of illegal immigration

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Thirty-four million blank work permits and "green cards," which authorizes illegal immigrants to live and work in the United States are currently in the works. In the meantime, the White House prepares to issue an executive order after the November 4 midterm ... continue reading


North Carolina's Tillis stumbles during televised debate Watch

Image of While Thom Tillis has a dominant lead among whites (50 percent to Kay Hagan's 37), he is getting trounced among black voters: just seven percent are in his camp, compared with 83 percent for Hagan.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Congressional candidate State Legislature Speaker Thom Tillis stumbled badly during a televised debate with his Democratic rival Senator Kay Hagen earlier this month. During the televised debate on October 7, Tillis appeared at a loss for words when it came to ... continue reading


Houston: First Amendment Does not apply to Christian ministers? Interview with Keith Fournier Watch

Image of As at the tower of Babel, the confusion spreads until no progress is possible.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Houston officials fired a shot across the bow of Christian ministers, pastors and priests who they think may be encouraging their congregations to oppose the city's controversial "bathroom bill." The request is chilling and violates the First Amendment, but it also ... continue reading


New York law strips 34,500 law-abiding citizens of their lawful right to bear arms with ZERO due process Watch

Image of A New York law could be too restrictive and features virtually no due process.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A New York law may be infringing on the rights of many Americans and undermining mental health efforts in that state. The law, known as the Safe Act, requires, as part of its implementation, for mental health professionals to report the names of any people who could be ... continue reading


Why build a school when you can buy a senator! North Carolina race tops $100 million

Image of America is no longer for sale, it has already been bought.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The nation's most expensive Senate race in history is topping $100 million as the entire nation looks to a critical election in North Carolina. The money poured into the race reveals that elections are coming down to money and outside influencers have substantial ... continue reading


167,000 convicted criminal immigrants walk free within the United States Watch

Image of Deportations from the interior of the United States declined 34 percent this year from last.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With both Islamic State and Ebola posing an imminent threat to the United States through people entering the country illegally, it's distressing to note just how lax the nation's deportation laws have become. According to Breitbart, there remain nearly 167,000 ... continue reading


Obama is advancing 'brutal program' of forced abortions in China, lawmaker says Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama and his administration are not only ignoring China's totalitarian edict of "one family, one child" policy but are advancing the "brutal program." That's the words of Representative Chris Smith (R-N.J., who) spoke at the Heritage ... continue reading


Four Kurdish terrorists slipped across Obama's open Mexican border, Homeland Security chief admits Watch

Image of Four members the Kurdistan Workers' Party, known as the PKK, were arrested in September trying to enter the United States illegally from Mexico.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The bad news: Four known Kurdish terrorists crossed into the United States. This has been confirmed by Department of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson. The good news: Johnson says that the four were not affiliated with Islamic States. Which is good news, of a sort. ... continue reading


Evangelical tells faithful not to vote for politicians who support homosexual marriage, abortion Watch

Image of An outspoken evangelical, Pastor Jim Garlow played a major role in organizing Christian groups in support of California's anti-gay marriage Proposition 8.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pastor Jim Garlow of Skyline Church in California stood before his congregation of more than 2,000 and warned his audience against voting for a candidate in who supports gay marriage and abortion. This includes candidates who are republican, including Carl ... continue reading


Obama aides knew more than they let on in 2012 Colombian prostitution scandal Watch

Image of White House spokesman Eric Schultz said Wednesday that President Obama and his advisers did not interfere with the inspector general's investigation.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Obama aides were given information that suggested that a prostitute was an overnight guest in the hotel room of a presidential advance-team member. The 2012 incident was quickly swept under the rug - but more details have since come to light. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 3:2-12
2 You have surely heard the way in which God ... Read More

Psalm, Isaiah 12:2-3, 4, 5-6
2 Look, he is the God of my salvation: I shall have ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:39-48
39 You may be quite sure of this, that if the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 22nd, 2014 Image

St. Pope John Paul II
October 22: Karol J. Wojtyla, known as John Paul II since his October 1978 ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter