This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Many challenges face the future of the Universal Service Fund Lifeline telephone program, which extends affordable, discounted telecommunication service to elderly people, people with low incomes or disabilities, and those receiving government assistance. It has been successful in connecting and keeping millions of customers on the telecommunications network and thereby linked to 21st century life.

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.)  is expressing outrage at the Lifeline government phone program operated by the Federal Communications Commission. The program provides free cell phones to low income people who qualify for welfare and food stamps.

McCaskill says that no one is making sure that people don’t receive more than one phone and there is no way to keep people from selling them.

The democrat says there appears to be no accountability between Lifeline and those distributing the phones.