August 29, 2015

CONTACT: Travis Smith (907) 258-3077

A request for a temporary restraining order (TRO) by the Alaska Legislature’s Majority caucus was denied.

ANCHORAGE: Today, Judge Frank Pfiffner ruled in favor of Medicaid expansion and rejected the GOP Majority caucus' attempt to get a TRO against Governor Bill Walker.

The Majority’s DC lawyers were unable to prove that they were likely to win, or that Alaska was irreparably harmed.

After hearing about the legality of Medicaid expansion from their own lawyersthe governor’s lawyers, and recently the Division of Legal and Research Services, the GOP Majority still decided to spend up to $400,000 on a DC law firm to file suit against the Governor.

While the TRO was declined, the Majority could possibly appeal to the Alaska Supreme Court.

However, with their firm’s hefty price tag, Judge Pfiffner’s decision, and the rapidly approaching Sept 1 rollout date, a frivolous appeal would be devastating for Alaskans.

“It should have never gotten to this point, it’s been clear all along that Medicaid expansion is good for Alaskans and our economy,” said Mike Wenstrup, chair of the Alaska Democratic Party. “Republican legislators chose to place partisan politics before the wellbeing of Alaskans. Republicans should not waste the Supreme Court’s time with a frivolous appeal.”