Gov. Bryant speaks about federal court case - - Jackson, MS

Gov. Bryant speaks about federal court case

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Governor Phil Bryant is sounding off on his decision to issue the executive order in the Blue Cross and HMA hospital fight. A federal judge has now blocked that order.

With one week till the federal hearing, Bryant is defending his action to step into the fight with the state's largest insurance provider.

"Sometimes it's difficult to do the right thing and we believe we're doing the right thing," said Bryant.

Bryant tried, with his executive order, to require Blue Cross to reinstate all the HMA hospitals. The six page order listed his reasoning. When asked about it Tuesday, it all came down to one issue for Bryant.

"My concern is healthcare access. My concern is not shrinking the market in Mississippi so you get the federal government coming in with even more force, even more determination to expand Obamacare here in the state," said Bryant.

Outside federal court Monday, Blue Cross' attorney welcomed a more in-depth investigation into that access.

"The network is adequate," stated attorney David Kaufman.

Governor Bryant hasn't been inside the courtroom for the proceedings. He's been represented by attorney's from Jim Hood's office.

"We'll again depend on the Attorney General's staff. They've done a remarkable job. Attorney General Jim Hood has been so supportive in this effort," said Bryant.

Both Blue Cross and the insurance commissioner maintain the governor overstepped his authority. When asked his opinion, the governor left that question in the hands of the judge.

"I'm not going to comment on that. It's ongoing litigation so we'll see what the courts say," Bryant explained.

Judge Wingate will make his final ruling after next Tuesday's hearing.

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