U.S. Appeals court ruling not the final say on Michigan affirmative action
Patrick Center November 16, 2012 | WGVU
The ruling handed down by the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati explains that the burden undermines a federal right that all citizens "have equal access to the tools of political change." That’s a fraction of the 70 page ruling that university administrators like Jeanne Arnold who’s the Vice President for Inclusion and Equity at Grand Valley State University are now evaluating.
“We’re encouraged that the document may offer possibilities for us to continue to do more to enhance the diversity and inclusiveness of our class of our university but we just can’t say at this point. We just don’t know what opportunities this may offer us.”
While the Appeals Court ruling is encouraging, Arnold has her eye on the U.S. Supreme Court.
“Here’s the caveat. There is a case now before the Supreme Court , the Fischer case, and the Supreme Court has already heard oral arguments and it’s about this very thing. About Prop 2 or about using race in admissions and it will not be decided until next spring by the Supreme Court. So anything that we do learn and come to understand about this current ruling here in Michigan will be impacted by whatever is decided by the Supreme Court next spring. So that’s the other reason for a tentative response now because we don’t want to act on something once we understand it more fully and then it gets totally turned around next spring potentially.”
And, Michigan’s Attorney General Bill Schuette says he'll ask the U.S. Supreme Court to look at the state's ban on affirmative action in college admissions. Schuette maintains entrance to public universities must be based on merit, not identity.
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