- Associated Press - Thursday, January 5, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina’s legislative leaders have asked federal regulators to reject an anticipated proposal by Gov. Roy Cooper to expand Medicaid, citing state laws they say show he lacks the authority to ask on his own.

Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore wrote the head of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on Thursday. Cooper announced Wednesday he’d file a request later this week seeking coverage though the federal health care overhaul.

The Republican lawmakers identify three laws and the state Constitution to back up their argument a request by the new Democratic governor is illegal.

Cooper says expansion would cover hundreds of thousands of uninsured people, generating jobs and reducing expensive emergency care. Legislators say covering the state’s match for expansion could reach $600 million annually.

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