Inside Higher Ed
October 23rd, 2014
In an interview in The New Yorker,
President Obama expressed support for affirmative action in higher
education, and questioned how precisely a Supreme Court deadline for
phasing out the consideration of race should be viewed. The article
looks broadly at President Obama's influence on the federal court
system, and touches on affirmative action toward the end of the piece.
In a landmark Supreme Court decision upholding the right of public
colleges to, under certain circumstances, consider race in admissions,
Justice Sandra Day O'Connor suggested that they should no longer be
needed in 25 years. Justice O'Connor, since retired from the court,
wrote the decision in 2003. Asked about that deadline, Obama told the
magazine that Justice O’Connor would “be the first one to acknowledge
that 25 years was sort of a ballpark figure in her mind.”
Generally, Obama signaled continued support for affirmative action.
“If the University of Michigan or California decides that there is a
value in making sure that folks with different experiences in a
classroom will enhance the educational experience of the students, and
they do it in a careful way,” the universities should be allowed to
consider race and ethnicity, he said.