Senators may add rebates for seniors in stimulus package

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Under pressure from labor and senior groups, Democratic senators are pushing to add rebates for seniors living off Social Security to an economic stimulus package.

The House and president last week agreed on a proposal to provide rebates to 117 million families and give businesses $50 billion in incentives to invest in new plants and equipment. AARP reportedly said that the $150 billion House package leaves out some 20 million seniors.

The Senate Finance Committee could meet to discuss a new draft of the proposal on Wednesday. So far, the proposal does not include an increase to states' Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP). The American Health Care Association, a nursing home lobbying group, has publicly expressed its interest in such an increase to help ensure seniors' access to Medicaid during a possible downturn in the economy.