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Affirmative action

Supreme Court of the United States

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Thinking About The Supreme Court's Successes And Failures, Erwin Chemerinsky Aug 2019

Thinking About The Supreme Court's Successes And Failures, Erwin Chemerinsky

Erwin Chemerinsky

The Supreme Court often has failed at its most important tasks and at the most important times. I set out this thesis at the beginning the book:

To be clear, I am not saying that the Supreme Court has failed at these crucial tasks every time. Making a case against the Supreme Court does not require taking such an extreme position. I also will talk about areas where the Court has succeeded in protecting minorities and in enforcing the limits of the Constitution. My claim is that the Court has often failed where and when it has been most needed ...


Eight Is [Not] Enough: A Review Of The 2015-2016 U.S. Supreme Court Term, Miller W. Shealy Jr. Oct 2016

Eight Is [Not] Enough: A Review Of The 2015-2016 U.S. Supreme Court Term, Miller W. Shealy Jr.

Miller W. Shealy Jr.

No abstract provided.


Thinking About The Supreme Court's Successes And Failures, Erwin Chemerinsky May 2016

Thinking About The Supreme Court's Successes And Failures, Erwin Chemerinsky

Vanderbilt Law Review

The Supreme Court often has failed at its most important tasks and at the most important times. I set out this thesis at the beginning the book:

To be clear, I am not saying that the Supreme Court has failed at these crucial tasks every time. Making a case against the Supreme Court does not require taking such an extreme position. I also will talk about areas where the Court has succeeded in protecting minorities and in enforcing the limits of the Constitution. My claim is that the Court has often failed where and when it has been most needed ...


The Fight For Equal Protection: Reconstruction-Redemption Redux, Kermit Roosevelt Iii, Patricia Stottlemyer Jan 2016

The Fight For Equal Protection: Reconstruction-Redemption Redux, Kermit Roosevelt Iii, Patricia Stottlemyer

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

With Justice Scalia gone, and Justices Ginsburg and Kennedy in their late seventies, there is the possibility of significant movement on the Supreme Court in the next several years. A two-justice shift could upend almost any area of constitutional law, but the possible movement in race-based equal protection jurisprudence provides a particularly revealing window into the larger trends at work. In the battle over equal protection, two strongly opposed visions of the Constitution contend against each other, and a change in the Court’s composition may determine the outcome of that struggle. In this essay, we set out the current ...


Race, Restructurings, And Equal Protection Doctrine Through The Lens Of Schuette V. Bamn, Steve Sanders Jan 2016

Race, Restructurings, And Equal Protection Doctrine Through The Lens Of Schuette V. Bamn, Steve Sanders

Brooklyn Law Review

In 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that Michigan voters had violated principles of the fair lawmaking process when they amended their state constitution to prohibit race-conscious affirmative action in public university admissions, reasoning that the amendment, known as “Proposal 2,” constituted a political restructuring that had violated the Equal Protection Clause by disadvantaging African Americans from being able to equally access political change. However, the Sixth Circuit was careful to avoid saying that Proposal 2 created a racial classification or was motivated by a purpose of discriminating on the basis of race. Instead ...


Mugwump, Mediator, Machiavellian, Or Majority? The Role Of Justice O'Connor In The Affirmative Action Cases, Thomas R. Haggard Jul 2015

Mugwump, Mediator, Machiavellian, Or Majority? The Role Of Justice O'Connor In The Affirmative Action Cases, Thomas R. Haggard

Akron Law Review

The purpose of this article is to provide a critical analysis of Justice O'Connor's affirmative action opinions. It will show that while her early record provides justification for all three characterizations, her more recent decisions suggest the emergency of a more favorable image. Her opinions in Croson and Media Broadcasting reflect the realization that a narrow, hair-splitting approach to this critical social and constitutional crisis will do little to hasten its resolution; that there is apparently no form of affirmative action that the liberal wing of the Court is unwilling to endorse, making her consensus by compromise approach ...


A Historical Review Of Affirmative Action And The Interpretation Of Its Legislative Intent By The Supreme Court, Carl E. Brody Jr. Jul 2015

A Historical Review Of Affirmative Action And The Interpretation Of Its Legislative Intent By The Supreme Court, Carl E. Brody Jr.

Akron Law Review

In Part I, I will discuss the history of pre-affirmative action programs. This involves an analysis of the original intent of the Fourteenth Amendment, its related remedial legislation, as well as several of the New Deal Acts prohibiting employment discrimination. Part II will analyze the advent of affirmative action, from its inception with the 1957 and 1960 Civil Rights Acts, and trace its development through Executive Orders 12250 and 12259, which constitute the last major expansion in affirmative action doctrine. Part III will examine the period between 1978 and 1991, where the Supreme Court's attempts to find a consistent ...


Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John Powell, Stephen Menendian Mar 2015

Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John Powell, Stephen Menendian

john a. powell

This Article investigates the potential ramifications of Fisher v. Texas and the future of race-conscious university admissions. Although one cannot predict the ultimate significance of the Fisher decision, its brief and pregnant statements of law portends an increasingly perilous course for traditional affirmative action programs. Part I explores the opinions filed in Fisher, with a particular emphasis on Justice Kennedy’s opinion on behalf of the Court. We focus on the ways in which the Fisher decision departs from precedent, proscribes new limits on the use of race in university admissions, and tightens requirements for narrow tailoring. Part II investigates ...


A Nation Of Widening Opportunities: The Civil Rights Act At 50, Ellen D. Katz, Samuel R. Bagenstos Jan 2015

A Nation Of Widening Opportunities: The Civil Rights Act At 50, Ellen D. Katz, Samuel R. Bagenstos

Books

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was an extraordinary achievement of law, politics, and human rights. On the fiftieth anniversary of the Act's passage, it is appropriate to reflect on the successes and failures of the civil rights project reflected in the statute, as well as on its future directions. This volume represents an attempt to assess the Civil Rights Act's legacy.

On October 11, 2013, a diverse group of civil rights scholars met at the University of Michigan Law School in Ann Arbor to assess the interpretation, development, and administration of civil rights law in the five ...


On Class-Not-Race, Samuel R. Bagenstos Jan 2015

On Class-Not-Race, Samuel R. Bagenstos

Book Chapters

Throughout the civil rights era, strong voices have argued that policy interventions should focus on class or socioeconomic status, not race. At times, this position-taking has seemed merely tactical, opportunistic, or in bad faith. Many who have opposed race-based civil rights interventions on this basis have not turned around to support robust efforts to reduce class-based or socioeconomic inequality. That sort of opportunism is interesting and important for understanding policy debates in civil rights, but it is not my focus here. I am more interested here in the people who clearly mean it. For example, President Lyndon Baines Johnson—who ...


From Access To Success: Affirmative Action Outcomes In A Class-Based System, Matthew N. Gaertner, Melissa Hart Jan 2015

From Access To Success: Affirmative Action Outcomes In A Class-Based System, Matthew N. Gaertner, Melissa Hart

Articles

Scholarly discussion about affirmative action policy has been dominated in the past ten years by debates over "mismatch theory'"--the claim that race-conscious affirmative action harms those it is intended to help by placing students who receive preferences among academically superior peers in environments where they will be overmatched and unable to compete. Despite serious empirical and theoretical challenges to this claim in academic circles, mismatch has become widely accepted outside those circles, so much so that the theory played prominently in Justice Clarence Thomas's concurring opinion in Fisher v. University of Texas. This Article explores whether mismatch occurs ...


Brief For Society Of American Law Teachers As Amicus Curiae Supporting Respondents, University Of Texas At Austin, Marc A. Hearron, David D. Cross, Bryan J. Leitch Jan 2015

Brief For Society Of American Law Teachers As Amicus Curiae Supporting Respondents, University Of Texas At Austin, Marc A. Hearron, David D. Cross, Bryan J. Leitch

Society of American Law Teachers Archive

No abstract provided.


Place, Not Race: Affirmative Action And The Geography Of Educational Opportunity, Sheryll Cashin Jul 2014

Place, Not Race: Affirmative Action And The Geography Of Educational Opportunity, Sheryll Cashin

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Ultimately, I argue that one important response to the demise of race-based affirmative action should be to incorporate the experience of segregation into diversity strategies. A college applicant who has thrived despite exposure to poverty in his school or neighborhood deserves special consideration. Those blessed to come of age in poverty-free havens do not. I conclude that use of place, rather than race, in diversity programming will better approximate the structural disadvantages many children of color actually endure, while enhancing the possibility that we might one day move past the racial resentment that affirmative action engenders. While I propose substituting ...


The Quixtoic Search For Race-Neutral Alternatives, Michael E. Rosman Jul 2014

The Quixtoic Search For Race-Neutral Alternatives, Michael E. Rosman

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The Supreme Court has stated that the narrow-tailoring inquiry of the Equal Protection Clause’s strict scrutiny analysis of racially disparate treatment by state actors requires courts to consider whether the defendant seriously considered race-neutral alternatives before adopting the race-conscious program at issue. This article briefly examines what that means in the context of race-conscious admissions programs at colleges and universities. Part I sets forth the basic concepts that the Supreme Court uses to analyze race-conscious decision-making by governmental actors and describes the role of “race-neutral alternatives” in that scheme. Part II examines the nature of “race-neutral alternatives” and identifies ...


Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John A. Powell, Stephen Menendian Jul 2014

Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John A. Powell, Stephen Menendian

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article investigates the potential ramifications of Fisher v. Texas and the future of race-conscious university admissions. Although one cannot predict the ultimate significance of the Fisher decision, its brief and pregnant statements of law portends an increasingly perilous course for traditional affirmative action programs. Part I explores the opinions filed in Fisher, with a particular emphasis on Justice Kennedy’s opinion on behalf of the Court. We focus on the ways in which the Fisher decision departs from precedent, proscribes new limits on the use of race in university admissions, and tightens requirements for narrow tailoring. Part II investigates ...


Thinking Hard About 'Race-Neutral' Admissions, Richard H. Sander, Aaron Danielson Jan 2014

Thinking Hard About 'Race-Neutral' Admissions, Richard H. Sander, Aaron Danielson

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Our exploration is organized as follows. In Part I, we sympathetically consider the very difficult dilemmas facing higher education leaders. Understanding the often irreconcilable pressures that constrain university administrators is essential if we are to envision the plausible policies they might undertake. In Part II, we draw on a range of data to illustrate some of the “properties” of admissions systems and, in particular, the ways in which race, SES, and academic preparation interact dynamically both within individual schools and across the educational spectrum. Partly because the questions we examine here have been so little studied, ideal data does not ...


The 'Compelling Government Interest' In School Diversity: Rebuilding The Case For An Affirmative Government Role, Philip Tegeler Jan 2014

The 'Compelling Government Interest' In School Diversity: Rebuilding The Case For An Affirmative Government Role, Philip Tegeler

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

How far does Justice Kennedy’s “moral and ethical obligation” to avoid racial isolation extend? Does the obligation flow primarily from Supreme Court case law, does it derive from an evolving consensus in the social sciences, or does it also have a statutory basis in Title VI and other federal law? In addition to its value as a justification for non-individualized, race-conscious remedial efforts by state and local governments, does the compelling interest identified in Parents Involved also suggest an affirmative duty on the part of the federal government? And if so, how far does this affirmative duty extend, and ...


The Role Of Networks, Mentors, And The Law In Overcoming Barriers To Organizational Leadership For Women With Children, Terry Morehead Dworkin, Aarti Ramaswami, Cindy A. Schipani Jan 2013

The Role Of Networks, Mentors, And The Law In Overcoming Barriers To Organizational Leadership For Women With Children, Terry Morehead Dworkin, Aarti Ramaswami, Cindy A. Schipani

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The 2012 election brought headlines such as "Another 'Year of Women' in Congress." Although the number of women in the highest legislative offices increased, their numbers are still significantly lower than those of men. Fewer than 100 women hold office in both houses of Congress. Corporate America similarly reflects significantly low female leadership numbers. For example, "fewer than 20% of finance industry directors and executives are women, and [there are] no women leading the 20 biggest U.S. banks and securities firms." Women make up nearly half the workforce and hold 60% of bachelor degrees, yet they hold only 14 ...


Considering Class: College Access And Diversity, Matthew N. Gaertner, Melissa Hart Jan 2013

Considering Class: College Access And Diversity, Matthew N. Gaertner, Melissa Hart

Articles

Each time that the continued legality of race-conscious affirmative action is threatened, colleges and universities must confront the possibility of dramatically changing their admissions policies. Fisher v. University of Texas, which the Supreme Court will hear this year, presents just such a moment. In previous years when affirmative action has been outlawed by ballot initiative in specific states or when the Court has seemed poised to reject it entirely, there have been calls for replacing race-conscious admissions with class-based affirmative action. Supporters of race-conscious affirmative action have typically criticized the class-based alternative as ineffective at maintaining racial diversity. This article ...


Grutter's Denouement: Three Templates From The Roberts Court, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2013

Grutter's Denouement: Three Templates From The Roberts Court, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

Precedent from the Roberts Court shows the Justices taking three distinct approaches to precedent they dislike. Each provides a template for the Court to criticize race-based affirmative action in higher education, as Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin is widely expected to do. Most narrowly, the Court might use Fisher to issue a warning, much like it did in 2009 when it sidestepped a constitutional challenge to the Voting Rights Act; under this approach, the opinion would spell out why the Justices think the diversity celebrated in Grutter v. Bollinger no longer provides sufficient justification for the use of ...


On Overreaching, Or Why Rick Perry May Save The Voting Rights Act But Destroy Affirmative Action, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2012

On Overreaching, Or Why Rick Perry May Save The Voting Rights Act But Destroy Affirmative Action, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

The State of Texas is presently staking out two positions that are not typically pursued by a single litigant. On the one hand, Texas is seeking the invalidation of the Voting Rights Act, and, on the other, the State is now defending the validity of the expansive race-based affirmative action policy it uses at its flagship university. This Essay presses the claim that Texas has increased the chance it will lose in bothTexas v. Holder andFisher v. University of Texas because it has opted to stake out markedly extreme positions in each. I argue that Texas would be more likely ...


The Promise Of Grutter: Diverse Interactions At The University Of Michigan Law School, Meera E. Deo Sep 2011

The Promise Of Grutter: Diverse Interactions At The University Of Michigan Law School, Meera E. Deo

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

In Grutter v. Bollinger, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld affirmative action at the University of Michigan Law School on the grounds of educational diversity. Yet the Court's assumption that admitting diverse students into law school would result in improved race relations, livelier classroom conversations, and better professional outcomes for students has never been empirically tested. This Article relies on survey and focus group data collected at the University of Michigan Lav School campus itself in March 2010 to examine not only whether, but how diversity affects learning. The data indicate both that there are sufficient numbers of students ...


Contingent Equal Protection: Reaching For Equality After Ricci And Pics, Jennifer S. Hendricks Jan 2010

Contingent Equal Protection: Reaching For Equality After Ricci And Pics, Jennifer S. Hendricks

Articles

The Supreme Court's decision in Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District #1 has been extensively analyzed as the latest step in the Court's long struggle with the desegregation of public schools. This Article examines the decision's implications for the full range of equal protection doctrine dealing with benign or remedial race and sex classifications. Parents Involved revealed a sharp division on the Court over whether government may consciously try to promote substantive equality. In the past, such efforts have been subject to an equal protection analysis that allows race-conscious or sex-conscious state action, contingent ...


The Future Of Disparate Impact, Richard A. Primus Jan 2010

The Future Of Disparate Impact, Richard A. Primus

Articles

The Supreme Court's decision in Ricci v. DeStefano foregrounded the question of whether Title VIl's disparate impact standard conflicts with equal protection. This Article shows that there are three ways to read Ricci, one of which is likely fatal to disparate impact doctrine but the other two of which are not.


Engineering The Endgame, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2010

Engineering The Endgame, Ellen D. Katz

Michigan Law Review

This Article explores what happens to longstanding remedies for past racial discrimination as conditions change. It shows that Congress and the Supreme Court have responded quite differently to changed conditions when they evaluate such remedies. Congress has generally opted to stay the course, while the Court has been more inclined to view change as cause to terminate a remedy. The Article argues that these very different responses share a defining flaw, namely, they treat existing remedies as fixed until they are terminated. As a result, remedies are either scrapped prematurely or left stagnant despite dramatically changed conditions. The Article seeks ...


The Courts Under President Obama, Scott A. Moss Jan 2009

The Courts Under President Obama, Scott A. Moss

Articles

No abstract provided.


Grutter V. Bollinger, Clarence Thomas, Affirmative Action And The Treachery Of Originalism: "The Sun Don't Shine Here In This Part Of Town", André Douglas Pond Cummings Sep 2006

Grutter V. Bollinger, Clarence Thomas, Affirmative Action And The Treachery Of Originalism: "The Sun Don't Shine Here In This Part Of Town", André Douglas Pond Cummings

Faculty Scholarship

Careful examination of Justice Clarence Thomas's dissenting opinion in the landmark affirmative action case Grutter v. Bollinger is important for a number of reasons: First, as one of the youngest members of the U.S. Supreme Court, Thomas stands a reasonable chance of still being a member of the court in 25 years, the self imposed implosion date (sunset provision) established by Justice O'Connor's majority opinion. No doubt, Thomas relishes the idea of writing the majority opinion that kills affirmative action and racial preferences for good.

Second, much as Justice Harlan's dissenting opinion in Plessy v ...


The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative And The Civil Rights Act Of 1964, Carl Cohen Jan 2006

The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative And The Civil Rights Act Of 1964, Carl Cohen

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The underlying principle of the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (MCRI), adopted by state wide vote on 7 November 2006, is identical to that of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Section 601 of the Civil Rights Act provides: “No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” The recent passage of the MCRI results now in the inclusion [in Article 1, Section 26 of the Michigan constitution] of section ...


A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing: The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative As The Savior Of Affirmative Action, Ryan C. Hess Jan 2006

A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing: The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative As The Savior Of Affirmative Action, Ryan C. Hess

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The University of Michigan has long been a place of important discussions about civil and human rights. On the steps of the Michigan Student Union, only a few paces from the Law School, lies an inconspicuous marker where then-President John F. Kennedy, Jr. dedicated the United States Peace Core. During the Vietnam War, the University played host to significant protests that changed how we think about war and its consequences. Most recently, the University litigated a series of Supreme Court cases that have helped define the role of educational institutions in the quest for equality. This role promises to continue ...


What The Mcri Can Teach White Litigants About White Dominance, Adam Gitlin Jan 2006

What The Mcri Can Teach White Litigants About White Dominance, Adam Gitlin

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The ballots have barely been counted, but litigation to enjoin implementation of the now-codified Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (“MCRI”) or at least limit its effect on admissions practices in Michigan’s universities is already underway. One of the primary arguments against the MCRI—and the basis upon which some plaintiff professors assert standing—is that students will suffer an impaired education if current admissions practices are discarded. Assuming that the MCRI survives these legal challenges, educators should be consoled somewhat to know the MCRI may still offer some pedagogy as compensation: litigation will likely be brought to enforce its provisions ...