September 14, 2010

PLF's Fisher brief receives some attention

By PLF's Fisher brief receives some attention

Author: Joshua Thompson

I was recently directed to a Law.com article on the important case out of the Fifth Circuit, Fisher v. University of Texas.  While the article is a bit old, it is still worth passing along.  Fisher is primed to be the next big Supreme Court case dealing with racial preferences in education.  In Fisher, the University of Texas at Austin is attempting to extend the "diversity rationale" from Grutter v. Bollinger in unprecedented ways.  PLF filed an amicus brief in the case where we were joined by the American Civil Rights Institute, the Center for Equal Opportunity, and the National Association of Scholars.  Here's a snippet from the article:

But Joshua Thompson, national litigation staff attorney at the Sacramento, Calif.-based Pacific Legal Foundation, disagrees. He helped write a joint amicus brief in support of the Fisher plaintiffs filed by his organization and three other nonprofit advocacy organizations: the American Civil Rights Institute, the Center for Equal Opportunity and the National Association of Scholars.

In an interview, Thompson says Grutter is the only case in the U.S. Supreme Court's history in which the justices extended racial preferences in an educational setting. He believes the decision is isolated and does not represent the high court's precedent on race and education.

Thompson sees Fisher as an opportunity to narrow the significance of Grutter. He writes in the amicus brief, "While Grutter did endorse a limited concept of diversity as a compelling state interest, it did not endorse the blanket racial balancing policies promoted here by the University, and accepted by the district court."

The entire article is worth reading; you can find it here.

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