Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) said Thursday that “no one will lose coverage from this day forward,” after a Washington federal judge blocked rules that compelled many poor people to work in exchange for public health insurance.
But calling the previous day’s court ruling “a great disruption of the status quo,” Hutchinson pledged to fight vigorously to continue the first-in-the-nation work requirements that Arkansas imposed last year on people in a part of Medicaid that expanded under the Affordable Care Act. He said he had urged the Trump administration to swiftly appeal the judge’s decision and seek a stay that would allow the state to resume the program while the legal case continues.
Neither the Justice Department nor the Department of Health and Human Services would discuss the legal strategy the administration intends to pursue in response to a pair of opinions handed down by U.S. District Judge James Boasberg late Wednesday afternoon. In the opinions, Boasberg, an appointee of President Barack Obama, wrote that HHS officials had failed to properly consider the effect of the work requirements on people who need coverage when they approved such rules for Arkansas, where they have been