Florida Five: Congress to look into Fla. LIP fund showdown, Rubio just misses ‘most conservative’ title

Five of today’s top Florida political stories at your fingertips:

Gov. Rick Scott speaks to media in Washington, DC on May 6. Photo WFSU.org

Congressional hearing planned on LIP showdown — A congressional hearing is planned to address the healthcare funding feud between Florida Governor Rick Scott and the Obama administration. But that meeting could come too late to help close a potential $2.2 billion hole in the state budget. Scott announced Tuesday that U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., will have the House Energy & Commerce Committee look into the governor’s allegations that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is trying to illegally coerce the state into accepting Medicaid expansion. Read more

In title for most conservative, Marco Rubio just misses top spot – As they race for the Republican Party’s presidential nomination, the senators in the running are also in a battle for the title of most-conservative. Ted Cruz of Texas wins. But not by much. The new legislative ratings by the American Conservative Union, a leading grassroots conservative organization, gave three senators perfect 100 scores: Read more

Here’s how Fla. reps fared: American Conservative Union: Alan Grayson has more conservative voting record than Patrick Murphy

Sources: Bush’s PAC renting office in South Florida — Amid the buzz of whether Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush will be running for president, sources say his political action committee (PAC) is getting office space. Sources confirmed Bush’s super PAC group, The Right To Rise, is renting 30,000 square feet of office space. Sources with the building management and the PAC confirmed the lease for the space located at the Flagler Corporate Center at 9250 W. Flagler Street. Read more

Florida Senate could pay legal bills for 23 senators – Florida Senate President Andy Gardiner is telling state senators that taxpayers will pay their legal bills as part of an ongoing lawsuit over state senate districts. The Senate’s top lawyer this month told 23 senators that Gardiner has approved a $5,000 stipend for them to hire their own attorneys. The groups challenging state senate districts in April subpoenaed records from 19 Republican and Democratic senators. Read more

Florida’s orange crop to be smaller than anticipated — The U.S. Department of Agriculture released a bleak estimate for the state’s citrus industry, saying that the 2014-2015 Florida orange crop will yield 96.4 million boxes of fruit, down from the 104 million boxes produced last year. The estimate released Tuesday represents a decline of 60 percent since the peak of citrus production at 244 million boxes in 1997-98. Florida agriculture commissioner Adam Putnam says it shows just how severely citrus greening has devastated Florida’s top fruit crop. Read more

ICYMI: Casey Anthony sighting: Acquitted ‘tot mom’ seen exercising near new Florida home

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