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Appeals Court Strikes Down MI Affirmative Action Ban

Kevin Rosseel

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has struck down Michigan’s voter-approved ban on race-based affirmative action in state university admissions and public employment. 

A closely divided court says the Michigan law violates the U.S. Constitution’s equal protection clause.  

The ruling says it’s not fair to outlaw race-based affirmation action, while allowing universities to grant other preferences, like those for children of alumni.  

Mark Rosenbaum is a University of Michigan law professor who argued the case for the American Civil Liberties Union.

“The decision says that when it comes to diversity, every group – they’re part of the American mosaic,” he says.

State Attorney General Bill Schuette says judges should not be allowed to up-end what Michigan voters decided in 2006.

“I’ll be filing an appeal to the United States Supreme Court,” he says.

The ballot campaign followed a U.S. Supreme Court decision a decade ago that partially upheld race-conscious admissions policies at the University of Michigan.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.
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