Supreme Court Appears Likely To Uphold Racial-Preference Bans

Career College Central summary:

  • The U.S. Supreme Court appeared this week to be leaning toward upholding state prohibitions on race-conscious admissions at public colleges as the justices heard arguments in a lawsuit challenging a ban passed by voters in Michigan.
  • Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, widely regarded as the swing vote in the case, joined justices with more-conservative reputations on racial matters in expressing skepticism toward the argument that Michigan's ban represented a discriminatory restructuring of the political process to put members of minority groups at a disadvantage in influencing admissions policies. Only two liberal members of the court—Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Justice Sonia M. Sotomayor—voiced sharp criticisms of the Michigan measure, adopted as an amendment to the state's Constitution in 2006.
  • With one of the court's four liberal members, Justice Elena Kagan, having recused herself from hearing the case, as a former U.S. solicitor general, the odds appear in favor of the court's overturning last year's decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to strike down Michigan's amendment as a violation of the U.S. Constitution's equal-protection clause.

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