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University of Michigan's Law School's Affirmative Action Policy Rendered Constitutional by Appeals Court

The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit recently ruled that the University of Michigan's Law School legally considered race in determining which students to admit. The court's written opinion stated, "We are satisfied that the law school's admissions policy sets appropriate limits on the competitive consideration of race and ethnicity." This recent 5 to 4 ruling overturned a lower court's ruling that asserted the admissions policy used by the law school illegally discriminated against white applicants. There has been widely divergent opinions on the subject of affirmative action by circuit courts around the nation, and, because the Sixth Circuit's ruling conflicts with decisions rendered by other federal appeals courts, many legal experts believe there is a strong possibility that this case will be taken up by the US Supreme Court.



The last Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action took place in 1978 with the University of California Regents vs. Bakke case. Allan Bakke, a thirty-five-year-old white man, was rejected twice by the University of California Medical School at Davis due to the school's reserved spaces for qualified minorities as part of the university's affirmative action program. However, many found the ruling unclear and ambiguous, and have been questioning its limits for the past two decades. Many are hoping that, if the University of Michigan's Law School case does reach the Supreme Court, it will make a comprehensive and definitive ruling as to the do's and don'ts of affirmative action practices. For more information on the University of Michigan's Law School case, viewers may access the first two above listed articles. The next two articles highlight opinion of the court's decision by presidents of both the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and the National Urban League, respectively. The fifth article provides affirmative action documents including court cases and decisions, while the sixth article gives affirmative action stories and court cases categorized alphabetically by state. Finally, the last site is a copy of the Supreme Court ruling in the case of the University of California Regents vs. Bakke.

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Classification
Creator
Publisher
Date Issued c2002
Language
Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication 2002-05-17
Archived Scout Publication URL https://scout.wisc.edu/Reports/ScoutReport/2002/scout-020517#IntheNews

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