David Ashenfelter, Detroit News, March 19, 2008
A federal Judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit challenging Proposal 2, a state law that bans preferential treatment based on race or gender in government hiring and university admissions.
U.S. District Judge David Lawson’s ruling upholds the constitutionality of the measure Michigan voters approved in 2006.
“It is the demonstration of a discriminatory purpose that (dooms the plaintiffs’) argument, since the plaintiffs must show that Proposal 2 was enacted “because of, not merely in spite of, its adverse effects upon an identifiable group.
“The Court cannot say that the only purpose of Proposal 2 is to discriminate against minorities,” Lawson wrote.
The pro-affirmative action organization By Any Means Necessary, which brought the lawsuit along with the American Civil Liberties Union, has vowed to appeal.
“This is racially targeted legislation of the worst kind,” said George Washington, an attorney for BAMN who has argued that the measure was designed to exclude black, Latino and Native American students from higher educational opportunities. “To uphold this law without giving black students a trial is adding insult to injury.”