Feb 18, 2018

Trump seeks to end heating assistance program for low-income people

President Donald Trump. Photo: MANDEL NGAN / AFP / Getty Images

President Trump's 2019 budget seeks to cut all funding from a program that provides heating assistance subsidies to low-income families in cold-weather states. The administration's argument: the program is marred by fraud and unnecessary, the AP reports.

Why it matters: This is the second attempt by the Trump administration to end the program, and it’s likely the proposal will again face resistance from lawmakers. Last year, Congress ultimately appropriated $3 billion, or 90% of the program's funding. Supporters argue the elderly, disabled and others with fixed incomes desperately need the assistance.

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Coronavirus spreads to more countries, and U.S. ups its case count

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus continues to spread to more nations, and the U.S. reports a doubling of its confirmed cases to 34 β€” while noting those are mostly due to repatriated citizens, emphasizing there's no "community spread" yet in the U.S. Meanwhile, Italy reported its first virus-related death on Friday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 2,359 people and infected more than 77,000 others, mostly in mainland China. New countries to announce infections recently include Israel, Lebanon and Iran.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 11 hours ago - Health

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Wells Fargo agrees to pay $3 billion to settle consumer abuse charges

Clients use an ATM at a Wells Fargo Bank in Los Angeles, Calif. Photo: Ronen Tivony/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Wells Fargo agreed to a pay a combined $3 billion to the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday for opening millions of fake customer accounts between 2002 and 2016, the SEC said in a press release.

The big picture: The fine "is among the largest corporate penalties reached during the Trump administration," the Washington Post reports.