Maine's Republican Gov. Paul LePage wants his administration to be allowed to hire private lawyers without the attorney general's permission.
LePage has asked the Maine Supreme Judicial Court if his office must still get Democratic Attorney General Janet Mills' approval for outside counsel if she refuses to represent his administration.
The Portland Press Herald first reported about the request on Wednesday.
LePage's administration spent $53,000 on private lawyers to appeal the federal government's denial of his request to remove 6,000 young adults from the state's Medicaid rolls.
The U.S. District Court sided with the federal government in November. LePage said he plans to submit a request for review with the U.S. Supreme Court this month.
Mills' office didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.