Gov. Brewer Seeks To Dismiss Medicaid Lawsuit

October 02, 2013

Gov. Jan Brewer and the director of Arizona’s Medicaid program have asked a judge to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the state’s plan to expand its health care program for the poor. The Goldwater Institute filed a lawsuit last month on behalf of some state lawmakers and others. The suit argues the hospital assessment that would help pay for the program is a tax, which required a two-thirds vote in both the state House and Senate. The bill was approved by a simple majority.

Wednesday, Brewer and the director of AHCCCS, the state’s Medicaid program, filed a motion to dismiss. In it, they argue none of the plaintiffs have standing to sue. The motion also said expansion opponents are looking to the courts to intervene after they were not able to either stop the bill in the legislature or collect enough signatures to refer it to the ballot. Brewer’s motion said that could lead to the courts being inundated with legislators’ lawsuits every time they did not succeed in the legislative process.

Brewer made expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act one of her top priorities this year. It would add around 300,00 low-income Arizonans to the program starting next year.

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