A defiant Gov. Jan Brewer today issued a call for a special session to secure the authority to sue the federal government over the health care law passed earlier this week.
The special session is set for March 29.
Brewer said the goal is to affirm the state’s sovereignty to regulate health care. The only topic on the agenda is Brewer’s request to the Legislature to give her the authority to challenge the federal government on behalf of the state.
Brewer has been sharply critical of the health care overhaul bill. Yesterday, she sent out a statement saying that the health care legislation would cost Arizona $11.6 billion over the next 10 years.
“Having the courage to live within our means as a state is critically important to our children and our families,” she said.
“These provisions have an immediate impact of creating a shortfall of roughly $400 million in the FY 2011 budget that was just passed by the Legislature. Any additional federal funds reportedly available to fill this gap are included in separate federal legislation that has yet to make its way to the President’s desk,” she added.
Sources close to talks between Brewer and Republican legislative leaders, speaking anonymously because they were not permitted to publicly discuss details of the meetings, said the governor is seeking formal approval by the Legislature because there is no definitive case law to dictate who may represent the state if the attorney general and governor disagree on how to proceed on a legal matter.