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Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) Welcomes Court Decision in Michigan Affirmative Action Case

May 14, 2002

(WASHINGTON, DC) -- Leaders of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus welcomed the decision Tuesday by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold as constitutional the University of Michigan Law School's efforts to create a diverse student body.

In its opinion on Grutter v. Bollinger, the court affirmed that the University of Michigan Law School has a compelling interest in creating a diverse student body and struck down a lower court decision that would have undone the law school's admissions policy.

"Today's decision by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals sends a signal to universities and colleges around the country that a comprehensive and balanced admissions policy makes good sense for schools and students, and that such policies are constitutional," said Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-TX), Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC). "The court has dealt a serious blow to those who seek to eliminate any consideration of diversity from university admissions policies."

"Today's decision gives an important boost to minority students across the country who are working hard to advance their way through our country's educational system," said Rep. Charlie Gonzalez, Chair of the CHC Civil Rights Task Force. "The court has recognized that the University of Michigan's Law School admissions policy is a constitutional and fair process that increases diversity and that in fact, such a policy serves a compelling state interest. This is a matter of inclusion of minorities in a university's student body and extending educational opportunities to all students. The University of Michigan should be commended for instituting such a policy and defending it in court."

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