COLUMBUS: Gov. John Kasich defended his decision to turn to a legislative board to push through an expansion of Medicaid as the Ohio Supreme Court agreed Thursday to speed up its consideration of a lawsuit over the move.
Kasich said his administration did not thwart the General Assembly by putting the funding request before the state Controlling Board, a seven-member panel of mostly lawmakers that handles certain adjustments to the state budget.
“It’s all within the rules,” he told reporters after a transportation event Thursday. “We’re fine.”
Two anti-abortion groups and six Republican lawmakers are suing Ohio’s Department of Medicaid and the Controlling Board after the board cleared the way last week for Kasich’s administration to spend $2.56 billion in federal dollars to cover thousands more people in the Medicaid health program.
The Ohio Supreme Court granted a request to an expedited schedule in the case.
The plaintiffs had argued such speed was warranted because expanded Medicaid coverage takes effect Jan. 1.