Alaska Attorney General’s office fights House-led appeal in Medicaid lawsuit

The Alaska Attorney General’s office says the Alaska House lacks the authority to substitute itself for a legislative committee in the appeal of a lower court’s decision to allow Gov. Bill Walker’s Medicaid expansion.

The legal filing Monday by the Alaska Department of Law comes less than two weeks after the House of Representatives attempted to appeal its lost Superior Court case to the state Supreme Court.

The Alaska Legislature, through the House-Senate Legislative Council, initially filed the lawsuit last year over the Walker administration’s unilateral expansion of Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act. In March, a Superior Court judge ruled against the Legislature and concluded that Walker acted within the law.

The case was originally brought by the Legislative Council, a committee of legislative leaders which can sue in the name of the Legislature when the Legislature isn’t in session.

Now controversy centers on how lawmakers are proceeding with the high-profile lawsuit and who’s calling the shots.

On May 5, the Legislature’s outside attorneys filed the appeal in Supreme Court, naming the Legislative Council as the appellant. However, the council never voted to continue the case, and under an opinion by the

Article source: