Sunday, February 11, 2007

David Walsh: Confused on the Law

Rick Esenberg calls out an attorney who happens to chair the UW Board of Regents:

It is certainly true that the Supreme Court, by a 5-4 vote, has held that an admissions program that considers race "as a factor" does not violate the United States Constitution. According to Rep. Steve Nass, some people apparently think this trumps state law. If they do, I hope they are not lawyers. (Update: Not only are they lawyers, but one is my former partner.)

As Rep. Nass quite correctly points out, such a claim is unequivocally false. The Supreme Court decision, Grutter v. Bollinger, only means that a state may adopt such a program, not that it must.

The Regents remain bound by state law which, it seems, they have and will continue to ignore.

If evaluating candidates for admission based upon the color of the skin is a good idea, the Regents should go to the legislature and ask it to amend the law to give them the authority to do so. As it is, it is hard to see why what they are doing is not patently illegal.

Evidently the canard about "moving lips" is not a canard.

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