Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant says he thinks he can run Medicaid even if lawmakers don't reauthorize the program or set its budget by the time the new fiscal year starts
The governor appoints the Medicaid director and says he has the authority to keep the program operating after that date. He says if someone doesn't like it, they could challenge him in court.
The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reported Bryant made the comments Wednesday at the Capitol.
House Democratic Leader Bobby Moak told The Associated Press it would be difficult for Bryant to run Medicaid without legislative approval.
Lawmakers ended their regular session last month without reauthorizing or funding Medicaid. They had a partisan dispute, with Democrats wanting to expand the program and Republicans opposing that.