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Pallone on FCC Lifeline Decision

Feb 6, 2017
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Energy and Commerce Committee Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) issued the following statement today in response to a decision from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) limiting nine companies’ involvement in the Lifeline Program:
“I’m deeply disappointed by the FCC’s aggressive actions against consumer protections.  The FCC’s decision to seriously hamstring the Lifeline program — which helps millions of Americans stay connected through access to basic communications like mobile phones and internet service — needlessly punishes the most vulnerable consumers.  I had hoped that our Democratic committee staff report refuting the exaggerated claims of waste, fraud, and abuse would put a stop to efforts to gut this program that is so vital for struggling families.  In making this decision, the FCC’s order relies on then-Commissioner Ajit Pai’s own testimony before our Committee last year, but at that same hearing he admitted that the FCC had not yet found any evidence of fraud in the Lifeline program.  I urge the FCC to immediately reconsider this baseless action, and get to work helping Americans stay connected, rather than ripping phones from those who need them most.”