Photo and article by Ramona du Houx
Governor Paul LePage's administration spent $51,918 to Portland law firm in an attempt to remove over 6,000 low-income 19-20 year olds from the state's Medicaid program. Janet Mills, the state’s Attorney General, warned LePage that he could not win the case. But he went ahead to the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals after the federal government denied his request to end Medicaid coverage for those young adults with the lawsuit and failed.
All payments came from the governor's contingency fund, which of course is taxpayer money, so he wouldn’t have to go through the legislative process.
Mills said the case had, "very little legal merit" and she refused to represent the administration in court. In fact Mills sided with the federal government to fight LePage's effort in court.
“This court battle was a huge waste of taxpayer dollars and a sign of misplaced," said Phil Bartlett, chair of the Maine Democratic Party. "Democrats will continue to fight for affordable health care for all Mainers - including younger workers and students who are a key part of growing our workforce and our economy.”