LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says delaying implementation of work requirements for enrollees in Michigan’s Medicaid expansion program would prevent the state from potentially wasting at least $1 million.

The Democrat issued a special message to legislative leaders Tuesday, a day after saying the Republican-controlled Legislature should pause the rules taking effect in January.

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She notes a lawsuit is challenging the law and says Michigan will soon spend $1 million to send letters notifying about 200,000 residents of requirements to keep their health coverage. If a court blocks implementation, as has happened in other states, the letter would be invalid.

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Whitmer says legislators should “protect Michigan taxpayers while the courts determine legality.”

Republican legislative leaders are rejecting the request. They say pausing the program would push people deeper into dependency.

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