Saturday, August 17, 2019

Waiting for Result

Whatever happened to the Harvard admissions lawsuit? Blog readers - and others - will recall that last fall there was a high-profile trial in which the allegation was that Harvard discriminated against Asian Americans in its admissions procedures. The lawsuit was brought by a group which is anxious to bring the issue of affirmative action to the U.S. Supreme Court (which it believes - with new conservative justices - might reverse its previous decisions allowing affirmative action under limited circumstances).

After the trial concluded in February 2019, the outcome has been awaited and awaited and awaited - and is still being awaited. At the time the trial ended, the Boston Globe said a decision was due "in the coming months." The last reference yours truly found was a Time magazine article from March 2019 indicating that a decision was likely "in coming weeks."*

Yours truly is not sure what the duration of "coming weeks" is, but whatever it is, it has come and gone without a decision. And we surely must be near the end of "coming months." Meanwhile, a separate lawsuit against the Harvard Law Review regarding its selection of student staff members - effectively another challenge to affirmative action - was recently dismissed in technical grounds.**

So we await. As blog readers will know, UC admissions are governed by state law under Proposition 209 which bans affirmative action. But - depending on the Harvard case (or maybe some other) - an eventual decision by the U.S. Supreme Court could have some impact locally.***
* and We last referenced the case at:
***One possibility is that the judge could ultimately dismiss the case on the grounds that no specific person who alleges he/she was harmed by the Harvard admission procedures was produced. UCLA law Professor Richard Sander has challenged UC regarding its admissions data in a related matter:

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