Lawsuit Against State's Medicaid Expansion Revived

April 22, 2014

The Arizona Court of Appeals has revived a lawsuit challenging the expansion of Arizona’s Medicaid insurance plan for the poor.

The court ruled Tuesday that lawmakers have the right to sue over the hospital assessment Gov. Jan Brewer used to fund the expansion.

Republicans in the House and Senate sued, claiming the assessment was essentially a tax, meaning it required a two-thirds majority vote to pass.  The assessment was approved by a bare majority of lawmakers.

A Maricopa County Superior Court judge ruled lawmakers had no right to sue, because it was the legislature itself that decided if a supermajority vote was needed.

But the appeals court rejected the decision and sent it back to Superior Court for further action.