FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 1, 2016
“Senator Applauds Superior Court Ruling Dismissing Legislative Council’s Lawsuit to Block Health Care to 40,000 Alaskans”
JUNEAU – The Alaska Superior Court today dismissed the lawsuit filed by the Legislative Council against Governor Walker in their effort to deny health insurance to 40,000 Alaskans through Medicaid expansion.
Democrats in the legislature have sent letters to the Legislative Council urging that the lawsuit be dismissed in full anticipation of the decision rendered today.
In September of 2015, the Legislative Council authorized two law firms to spend up to $450,000 to pursue this ill-conceived case over the strong objections of House and Senate Democrats, and many Alaskans.
“Our own legislative attorneys predicted this, and the court agreed,” said Senator Bill Wielechowski (D-Anchorage), member of the Judiciary Committee. “It’s disappointing that the Majority in the legislature has now spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to come to the same exact conclusion that our own attorneys did months ago. We can’t change the past, but it is time to move on, accept the court’s decision, and acknowledge the benefits of Medicaid expansion which have been touted by the Majority’s own hired consultants, and the Department of Health and Social Services.”
According to the latest report from Alaska’s DHSS, Medicaid expansion has provided health care services to 10,416 Alaskans since September 1, 2015, and paid more than $34 million in claims, all federally funded.
“During these times of fiscal crisis, we simply do not have the money to waste on this issue, and my sincere wish is that the Majority will accept the court’s decision and not appeal this frivolous lawsuit.”
For more information contact Senator Wielechowski at 907-242-1558.