The Republican-controlled Arizona Senate has passed a historic measure that embraces a signature part of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.
The $8.8 billion state budget approved on Thursday night includes expanding Medicaid to 300,000 additional Arizonans. Five Republicans joined with all the Democrats to pass measure despite opposition from Senate President Andy Biggs.
Republicans also split on the budget itself although they crafted the plan because conservatives opposed the Medicaid plan.
Expansion supporters added Medicaid to a budget bill during an hours-long debate Thursday afternoon.
The Senate's 13 Democrats backed the plan.
Republican Gov. Jan Brewer shocked many when she announced in January she wanted to expand Medicaid after opposing Obama's health care overhaul for years.
The House next takes up the plan. Speaker Andy Tobin wants voters to decide the Medicaid expansion debate.
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
They were born just two weeks apart. A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old pit bull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other! Louisiana native Brandi Hodges, 25, has posted photosMore >
A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old Pitbull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other!More >
Tuesday, July 29 2014 9:20 AM EDT2014-07-29 13:20:44 GMT
Police said an 11-year-old Independence boy died following a wreck in Independence that sent multiple people to the hospital Friday morning.More >
Relatives of 11-year old Noah Stratton, killed in an accident in Independence last Friday, say they are grieving deeply, but have only fond memories of young Noah whom they call "The greatest 11-year-old in the world."