Judge rules against tea party on health reforms

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Gov. Steve Beshear’s decision to expand the Medicaid program and to create the Kentucky Health Benefit Exchange to help Kentuckians find insurance coverage has been upheld in a court decision.

Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd ruled Tuesday that Beshear acted appropriately.

Tea party activists had filed lawsuits challenging Beshear’s authority to implement the reforms in Kentucky. They pledged Tuesday to appeal Shepherd’s ruling.

Tea party activist David Adams has been sharply critical of Beshear’s decision to push ahead with implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Adams insisted that Beshear could do so only with the blessing of the Legislature.

Shepherd disagreed, saying the governor had the authority to take the action.

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