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More than half of federal spending will soon be dedicated to seniors, according to the latest estimates from Congress’ official budget scorekeeper.

Why it matters: That spending will be driven largely by the steadily rising cost of health care. And futzing around the edges of the system won’t change that trend.

Between the lines: Medicare and Social Security alone cost the federal government roughly $1.3 trillion last year, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s latest estimates.

  • CBO expects those two programs to reach $2.7 trillion by 2029.
  • Throw in a handful of other programs that Congress funds each year, and federal spending on people over 65 is expected to account for more 10% of the total U.S. economy in a decade.
  • Once you subtract the money the government spends on interest payments on the debt, programs for seniors would take up 50% of all remaining spending.

Aging baby boomers and rising health care costs are the main drivers of that spending. Per-person health care costs "are projected to grow faster than the economy over the long term," CBO said.

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U.S. officials: Iran and Russia aim to interfere in election

Iran and Russia have obtained voter registration information that can be used to undermine confidence in the U.S. election system, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe announced at a press conference Wednesday evening.

Why it matters: The revelation comes roughly two weeks before Election Day. Ratcliffe said Iran has sent threatening emails to Democratic voters this week in states across the U.S. and spread videos claiming that people can vote more than once.

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Supreme Court blocks Alabama curbside voting measure

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Wednesday evening blocked a lower court order that would have allowed voters to cast ballots curbside at Alabama polling places on Election Day.

Whit it matters: With less than two weeks until Election Day, the justices voted 5-3 to reinstate the curbside voting ban and overturn a lower court judge's ruling designed to protect people with disabilities during the coronavirus pandemic.