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A Better Partnership


Apr 2014
April 22, 2014

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Michigan’s Ban on Affirmative Action in College Admissions

The U.S. Supreme Court today upheld Michigan’s ban on the use of race- and sex-based criteria in university admissions. The ruling reversed a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which struck down Michigan’s 2006 voter-approved ban on the use of race and sex in higher education, public employment and public contracting.

Warner Norcross & Judd partner John Bursch, who argued the case when he was Michigan’s Solicitor General, noted that the “nature of the case is not about whether race or gender can ever be used as a basis for university admissions, but whether the people of a state have the right to choose race- and sex-neutral means of obtaining diversity on college campuses.”

Public universities may continue to use neutral factors to promote a diverse student body on campus, and they should contact any member of the Higher Education group at Warner Norcross & Judd about how best to craft admissions policies that will accomplish the University’s goals while complying with Michigan’s Constitution

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