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Appeals court reaffirms affirmative action decision

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AUSTIN (KVUE) -- The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has once again ruled in favor of the University of Texas' affirmative action admissions policy.

The appeals court reheard arguments in the case, which challenges UT's admissions policy, but they reached the same conclusion: Affirmative action is constitutional.

Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal appeals court in New Orleans didn't apply "strict scrutiny" when making its initial decision to uphold UT's admissions policy, which allows the use of race as a factor in college admissions.

The 7-1 Supreme Court ruling came in June 2013 in the case of Abigail Fisher, a white Texas student who was not offered admission to UT Austin in 2008. Fisher claimed the affirmative action policy was the reason she didn't get admitted.

Justice Anthony Kennedy, who wrote the Supreme Court's 2013 decision, said courts must determine if race is necessary in achieving the educational benefits of diversity on college and university campuses.

The affirmative action policy at UT uses race as one of many factors when admitting about a quarter of the university's incoming freshman.

 

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