Acting Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn forcefully defended her agency’s phone subsidy program for the poor in a speech on Thursday.
Conservative critics have claimed the FCC’s Lifeline program is a wasteful government handout and referred to it as the “Obamaphone” program.
“Here’s the truth. The Lifeline program long predates the current administration,” Clyburn said in the speech at the New America Foundation. “It was actually created during the Reagan administration, so let’s give credit where credit is due. The Lifeline program is a legacy President Reagan could be proud of.”
Congress first enacted the Lifeline program in 1985, and the FCC expanded the program to cover cellphone service in 2005 during the George W. Bush administration.