April 9, 2013

Race-based contracting is unconstitutional

By Joshua P. Thompson Senior Attorney

So argues this op-ed that I co-authored with Roger Clegg published in the Washington Times this morning.  Here’s a snippet:

Remedial discrimination makes less and less sense with every tick of the clock, as the days when black companies were not allowed to compete fade into the past, and as America becomes increasingly multiethnic and multiracial.

Regarding that last point, consider: It is widely known that Asians (along with whites) are discriminated against in university admissions, but what is less well-known is that it is more and more common for Hispanics (again, along with whites) to be discriminated against in government contracting.

A recent example is in Milwaukee. The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce last year called for the repeal of a new measure purportedly designed to ensure the participation of minority contractors in getting city business. According to the chamber’s president, Maria Monreal-Cameron, the ordinance is “based on the results of the disparity study which said that Hispanic-owned and Native American-owned firms are overutilized in the area of construction.” She added, “It means we’re being penalized for our success and hard work.” The California Department of Transportation engages in similar discrimination, and the issue has recently arisen in New York City as well. Meanwhile, however, the Obama administration has been considering whether to add Arab Americans to the list of those who get special treatment by the federal government.

Read the rest.

 

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