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Government spending

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  • $979 billion: Amount the U.S. and state government spent on senior benefits in 2007.
  • $27,289: Average benefit per senior in 2007.
  • 24%: Percent increase in average benefit for seniors from 2000 to 2007.
  • 36.5 million: Number of people in the United States age 65 or older in 2007.
  • 34.9%: Percent of federal spending in 2007 that went to senior benefits, compared with 20.2 percent for defense.

Source: USA Today