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News Scan

House Votes Holder in Contempt: Stephen Dinan of The Washington Times reports the House on Thursday voted 255-67 to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress in the investigation of the "Fast and Furious" gun-walking operation. It is the first time an attorney general has been held in contempt by a chamber of Congress.

Judge Rejects Fed's Request to Block Florida Voter Purge: The Associated Press reports U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle on Wednesday rejected a lawsuit from the Department of Justice filed earlier this month to block Florida's purging of ineligible voters from the state's voter rolls. Hinkle said federal voting laws do not cover voters who should never have been allowed to vote in the first place. Ron Labasky, the legal adviser for the association that represents county election supervisors, sent a memo to supervisors late Wednesday, telling them that they can now remove a person from the voting rolls if they have "sufficient documentation" that someone is not a U.S. citizen. Labasky said the ruling resolves whether counties can continue with the purge while multiple lawsuits associated with the purge still exist.

Chicago Latest City to De-Criminalize Marijuana Possession: Wednesday to issues tickets for someone caught with 15 grams or less of marijuana instead of arresting them. Currently, those convicted of marijuana possession face a misdemeanor charge and a punishment of up to six months in jail and a $1,500 fine. More than 18,000 people were arrested in Chicago last year for marijuana possession. Police officers will still arrest people caught smoking marijuana or in possession of it on park or school grounds, anyone under 17 caught with marijuana, or anyone believed to have been trying to sell marijuana. The new policy goes into effect August 4.

CA Meets Second Prison Population Reduction Benchmark: The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation reports it has reached the second population benchmark under the prisoner reduction order. As of June 27, 2012, the inmate population in California's 33 prisons was to be at no more than 155 percent of design capacity, or 124,000 inmates. CDCR Secretary Matthew Cate said they had already reached that number in mid-April.

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