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Supreme Courtís Affirmative Action Ruling: An Explainer
WSJ ^ | April 22, 2014 | Ashby Jones

Posted on 04/22/2014 11:58:20 AM PDT by yldstrk

Tuesday’s ruling by the Supreme Court on the use of race as a criteria in colleges’ and universities’ admissions policies is the latest blow to affirmative action programs.

What happened?

In a 6-2 ruling – Justice Elena Kagan did not participate – the court essentially found that the U.S. Constitution does not bar voters in a state from banning the use of race as a factor in considering whether someone should be admitted to a state college or university.

Is the ruling at odds with recent Supreme Court rulings upholding the use of race in admissions?

It’s true that in recent years, the Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled that public colleges and universities can use race in its admissions policy under certain, narrow circumstances. The court ruled that way in a case involving the University of Michigan Law School in 2003 and reiterated its position in a 2013 case involving the University of Texas.

Today’s ruling does nothing to upend that position.

Rather, the ruling Tuesday just says state voters can prevent public college and universities from using affirmative action. So while state colleges and universities can use affirmative action programs, voters have the power to take that option away.

What is the potential impact?

Eight states have outlawed affirmative action at public schools. Among them are some big states, like Florida, California and Arizona.

Tuesday’s ruling likely means that those laws, some of which have been on the books for more than a decade, will stay on the books. It also gives the green light to voters in other states who might be considering changing their laws to ban the use of affirmative action in public higher education.

(Excerpt) Read more at blogs.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: affirmativeaction
Hope for the meritocracy
1 posted on 04/22/2014 11:58:20 AM PDT by yldstrk
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To: yldstrk
...he ruling Tuesday just says state voters can prevent public college and universities from using affirmative action.

Which is at odds with the thinking that voters can determine whether or not sodomy MUST be celebrated in violation of 5,000+ years of civilized society and the Creator.

2 posted on 04/22/2014 11:59:47 AM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: yldstrk

Free at last!


3 posted on 04/22/2014 11:59:52 AM PDT by equaviator (There's nothing like the universe to bring you down to earth.)
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To: yldstrk

Can a state make a law giving whites preference?

The Leftist argument comes down to, “Racism is good, when we do it.”


4 posted on 04/22/2014 12:02:31 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: yldstrk
Eight states have outlawed affirmative action at public schools. Among them are some big states, like Florida, California and Arizona.

When did AZ become a "big state?"

5 posted on 04/22/2014 12:03:05 PM PDT by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: yldstrk

Ginsberg and Sotomayor were the 2 no votes.


6 posted on 04/22/2014 12:04:50 PM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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To: yldstrk

and hope for those who want affirmative action. Can’t these judges ever uphold the constitution. How can you allow states to have affirmative action when it discriminates against so many of their citizens?


7 posted on 04/22/2014 12:07:46 PM PDT by morphing libertarian
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To: Verginius Rufus

“Ginsberg and Sotomayor were the 2 no votes.”

And basically, their opinion was “Affirmative action is not only OK, it’s mandated by the Constitution.”

I guess they found that somewhere in the penumbra of Sotomayor’s giant lesbian ass.


8 posted on 04/22/2014 12:08:04 PM PDT by TheThirdRuffian (RINOS like Romney, McCain, Christie are sure losers. No more!)
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To: SoFloFreeper

My daughter recently asked if it was legal for a potential employer to ask your race. I told her I thought it was illegal. Also I made my son an appointment with a specialists and one of the questions they asked over the phone was ethnicity or race, which they prefaced with this is a legal question and you have the right to not answer it. Which I did not answer, as I do not know the purpose the info is being sort.


9 posted on 04/22/2014 12:09:21 PM PDT by This I Wonder32460
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To: yldstrk

The official response from Mi attorney general Bill Schuette.

http://content.govdelivery.com/attachments/MIAG/2014/04/22/file_attachments/287542/04.22.14%2BU.S.%2BSupreme%2BCourt%2BUpholds%2BMichigan%2BConstitutional%2BRequirement%2Bfor%2BEqual%2BTreatment%2Bin%2BCollege%2BAdmissions.pdf


10 posted on 04/22/2014 12:11:54 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: TheThirdRuffian

Well, it’s the Constitutional mandate for diversity.


11 posted on 04/22/2014 12:16:52 PM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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To: This I Wonder32460

I never answer the racial question over the phone or when filling out forms. For one thing, it isn’t anyone’s business. For another, I don’t have any way of knowing what they are doing with the information. For instance, why does my cell phone company want to know my race? My guess is if I lie they’ll know that I’m lying and I won’t be getting anything for free (and don’t want anything), but why do I have a feeling if I tell the truth there’s some hidden charge where I end up paying for other peoples’ free stuff? I’m sure there’s no getting around it, but then why do they even ask?


12 posted on 04/22/2014 12:19:40 PM PDT by RightInJersey
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To: yldstrk

Somewhere in Arizona is an old woman shrieking “No! No! I said they need 25 more years!”

But her bitter screams were happily ignored....


13 posted on 04/22/2014 12:21:08 PM PDT by Regulator
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To: Verginius Rufus
mandate for diversity

Yes, it's the Compelling State Interest that Madison and Jefferson wrote into their noble compact...

The one you have to intuit by searching for Umbras and Penumbras that also remain um, unseen...

14 posted on 04/22/2014 12:23:32 PM PDT by Regulator
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To: TheThirdRuffian

Everything not forbidden is mandatory.


15 posted on 04/22/2014 12:25:25 PM PDT by Inwoodian
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To: yldstrk

“affirmative action” is illegal, unconstitutional, and wrong. Makes no difference if there’s a law, or what the supreme court says.


16 posted on 04/22/2014 12:27:09 PM PDT by I want the USA back
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To: yldstrk
Tuesday’s ruling by the Supreme Court on the use of race as a criteria criterion...

Sigh...even the once vaunted WSJ.

17 posted on 04/22/2014 12:27:58 PM PDT by Paine in the Neck (Socialism consumes EVERYTHING)
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To: RightInJersey

“I never answer the racial question over the phone or when filling out forms.”

I always say I am black.

In fact, I think everyone should say they are black.


18 posted on 04/22/2014 12:48:13 PM PDT by TheThirdRuffian (RINOS like Romney, McCain, Christie are sure losers. No more!)
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To: yldstrk

“...In a lengthy dissent joined by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice Sonia Sotomayor disagreed, finding that Michigan’s voter-approved law illegally discriminates against minorities,...”
*********************************************************************

So, the two voting Über-Progressives think the law discriminates AGAINST minorities because it doesn’t allow discrimination FOR them.

You can’t make such strange thinking up!


19 posted on 04/22/2014 12:54:33 PM PDT by House Atreides
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To: This I Wonder32460

A medical specialist might need to know race to know what to look for. There are medical differences between the races, sickle cell being an example.


20 posted on 04/22/2014 1:17:02 PM PDT by Beagle8U (Unions are an Affirmative Action program for Slackers! .)
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To: yldstrk; All
... the U.S. Constitution does not bar voters in a state from banning the use of race as a factor in considering whether someone should be admitted to a state college or university.

Note that citizens can easily figure out what the Constitution does and does and not do if they would only read it for themselves. After all, the Constitution's relatively simple rules are arguably no more challenging to follow than the rules for playing a child's board game.

Regarding the use of race as a factor in college admissions, please consider the following points concerning the Constitution.

Speaking of voters in a state, the only thing that the states have amended the Constitution to protect on the basis of race is voting rights as evidenced by the 15th Amendment. Otherwise, the states are free to make laws which discriminate on the basis of race for any other issue, race-based colleged admission requirements in this example, as long as such laws don't unreasonably abridge voting rights.

But if citizens feel that the states shouldn't have the power to discriminate on the basis of race, then citizens can work with their state and federal lawmakers to amend the Constitution to further limit state and federal government powers concerning race issues.

The main consideration is to stop all three branches of the federal government from politicking on race-based issues since the states have never delegated to the feds, via the Constitution, the broad power to address race issues.

Finally, regarding college policies, with the exception of military training establishments reflected in Congress's constitutional Article I, Section 8-limited powers, please bear in mind that the states have also never delegated to the feds, via the Constitution, the specific power to legislatively define policy, race or otherwise, for intrastate schooling establishments.

21 posted on 04/22/2014 1:19:58 PM PDT by Amendment10
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To: yldstrk

This is good. Now can we extend this to hiring? Untold hours of faculty time at my university alone (in supposedly conservative Kansas) are wasted completing forms explaining to an office of affirmative action why every single job applicant not interviewed was not interviews, and why every single applicant interviewed who was not offered a job was not offered a job so that some racial-and-gender-grievance commissar who knows nothing about the academic discipline in question can second-guess the faculty’s hiring decisions on the basis of race or sex.


22 posted on 04/22/2014 1:39:55 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know...)
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To: Verginius Rufus

Big surprise that Ginsburg and Sotomayor voted the party line.

Their votes are so predictably leftist that we could replace them with machines and it would have no visible effect on the judiciary.


23 posted on 04/22/2014 1:58:08 PM PDT by tom h
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To: yldstrk

So students might find in the not-to-distant future that states that vote not to use race as a factor in admissions will have higher standards. This could get interesting.


24 posted on 04/22/2014 2:01:49 PM PDT by grania
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To: TheThirdRuffian

Funny that you say that.

I am a true “white Hispanic” — don’t speak Spanish, don’t look like a minority, middle class upbringing, never encountered any discrimination — but I have had HR Directors come to my office and beg me to check the racial minority box (which I usually check “white”). I had manager roles at a young age, you see, and they wanted to include me in the diversity tallies.

For over 25 years my bride has been Mrs Tom H and I am certain that, because her married name is Hispanic, her employers have included her in the diversity tallies as well.


25 posted on 04/22/2014 2:06:35 PM PDT by tom h
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To: tom h

I was told (more than 30 years ago) of a case involving a woman who got all sorts of “affirmative action” advantages because of her Hispanic surname. It was the name of her ex-husband (she wasn’t Hispanic), which he got from his father who had abandoned the family when he was a small child—he had been raised by his Irish-American mother.


26 posted on 04/22/2014 2:13:54 PM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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To: tom h

You sound like my wife.

I advise you to play the game. Abuse it, so it will break.

My wife is honestly 100% Mescalero Apache, born on the reservation. She also happens to be a medical doctor, and slightly to the right of John Birch in things political.

She refused to check anything minority going through school — and found out the medical school changed her records to reflect “Native American” after her first year. Pissed her off mightily.

Now, our kids (who are also legitimately Apache, in that they grew up in Ruidoso, have decided the pressure is such that, if they don’t play the Affirmative Action game, they might have issues.

My eldest son (really my step son) got a lot of grief in the Army for refusing to check NA, and finally did. Pissed him off, too. He thinks he got a legit Bronze Star with a V and a bullshit Bronze Star with a V because the Army wanted to run a story about a NA who got two Bronze Stars.


27 posted on 04/22/2014 2:41:40 PM PDT by TheThirdRuffian (RINOS like Romney, McCain, Christie are sure losers. No more!)
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To: RightInJersey
I never answer the racial question over the phone or when filling out forms.

I answer "Human". Even(especially) on my Census form (the only other question I answer being how many people live in my house.)

28 posted on 04/22/2014 3:23:42 PM PDT by TBP (Obama lies, Granny dies.)
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To: tom h
Big surprise that Ginsburg and Sotomayor voted the party line.

But Breyer didn't. What's up with that?

29 posted on 04/22/2014 3:25:58 PM PDT by TBP (Obama lies, Granny dies.)
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To: Amendment10
The main consideration is to stop all three branches of the federal government from politicking on race-based issues since the states have never delegated to the feds, via the Constitution, the broad power to address race issues.

Well since the Feds have obviously done so anyway, what is your explanation for their justification?

30 posted on 04/22/2014 3:29:49 PM PDT by Talisker (One who commands, must obey.)
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To: yldstrk
The republic actually dodged a huge bullet here, one that goes far beyond affirmative action. As I understand it the argument that was rejected is that amending the MI constitution in a way that can be shown to have a disparate impact on minorities is per se a constitutional violation, because minority racial groups now have to face an unfairly high barrier to fighting for their political interests. Because race is a suspect category, racial minorities are forever presumptive victims, and any law that affects them is presumptively suspect.

Amazingly, a federal appeals court bought this. If upheld, that ruling would have irreversibly cemented the idea that the law must treat us not as individuals but as perpetually warring racial groups. It would have been a calamity.

31 posted on 04/22/2014 3:34:58 PM PDT by untenured
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To: yldstrk

In the final analysis, it should be said that while the court has in past said that under limited circumstances, *inequality* before the law can be used by universities; if the people reject this *inequality* and demand *equality* before the law, the courts cannot overrule them on such a basic principle of the law.

It goes to the heart of American jurisprudence.

Of course, the Democrats think otherwise.


32 posted on 04/22/2014 3:42:21 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy (WoT News: Rantburg.com)
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To: Talisker; All
... what is your explanation for their justification?

Crook politicians will promise anything to low-information voters, voters who have never been taught the federal government's constitutionally limited powers, so that such politicians can get elected to DC. Such politicians want to go to DC in order to follow the tsunami of constitutionally indefensible federal taxes to DC, taxes that Congress cannot justify under its constitutional Article I, Section 8-limited powers, so that they can help "guard" that revenue.

33 posted on 04/22/2014 3:45:08 PM PDT by Amendment10
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To: Cyber Liberty

It is 16th biggest. So with 24 states smaller I would say it is big. But of course you may decide that only the tpp 5 are big.


34 posted on 04/22/2014 4:39:51 PM PDT by FreedomNotSafety
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To: This I Wonder32460

You can ask anything you want. It is only illegal to use that information in order to not hire someone based on a protected status. Of course the simple act of asking would be proof enough that race was the reason the person was not hired.

See I can ask if you are white and refuse to hire you if you say yes and that is legal. If the answer is you’re black and I hire you that is o’k. If the answer is you’re black and I do not hire you because you are black then that is illegal. If the answer is you’re black but I do not hire you because a some other reason that is legal but probably a losing bet in front of the EEOC.

Fun huh? And we think China, Putin, and oil companies are our biggest threats.


35 posted on 04/22/2014 4:47:42 PM PDT by FreedomNotSafety
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To: TBP

Breyer is an old-fashioned liberal, e.g., one with a conscience. A jurist who believes the law is what it actually says. Period.


36 posted on 04/23/2014 11:52:18 AM PDT by tom h
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