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Former Gov. Jan Brewer Celebrates Arizona Medicaid Decision

The Arizona Supreme Court has upheld the legality of an assessment on hospitals that helps pay for health care for 400,000 residents.

In a unanimous decision issued Friday, the justices rejected the argument by some Republican lawmakers that the levy, approved in 2013, was illegally enacted.

Former Gov. Jan Brewer, who helped champion the assessment, celebrated the decision by the state’s high court.

"It is a major victory for the state and every citizen in the state," Brewer said. "Now we've got 400,000 Arizonans will continue now to have health care. That's really, really important."

The Goldwater Institute sued on behalf of several lawmaker including Arizona House Speaker J.D. Mesnard.

“I think the need for another ballot measure is a legitimate question, not one that I've come to any particular conclusion on," Mesnard said. "Of course, any potential ballot measure is at least a year away. And you don't know whether it would pass or not."

But the ruling is more mixed for Gov. Doug Ducey.

His administration defended the law, but Ducey himself, who was state treasurer at the time, was never in favor of expanding Medicaid.

The ambivalence was reflected in Ducey's own statement. "The court has spoken, and I respect its ruling,'' Ducey said. "The state of Arizona will continue to follow the law passed by the Legislature in 2013.''