Michigan’s Sec. 26 remains in effect

Washington, D.C.: The full U.S. Supreme Court today denied a motion asking it to reinstate an injunction barring enforcement of Michigan’s new civil rights amendment that prohibits the use of racial preferences by state agencies.

As a result of the Court’s ruling, the Michigan amendment remains in force. Today’s ruling leaves in place an earlier ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which concluded there is little merit to the various legal challenges now before the federal courts.

CIR President Terence Pell said, “Today’s decision puts to rest the idea that Michigan’s Prop. 2 somehow violates federal law. Justice Stevens’ ruling makes clear the citizens of Michigan had every right to ban the use of racial preferences in their state. Its time for Michigan Governor Granholm, UM President Mary Sue Coleman and others to drop their increasingly futile effort to use the federal courts to subvert the will of Michigan voters.

The Washington law firm of Cooper and Kirk, PLLC, is serving as lead counsel in CIR’s effort to defend Prop. 2 against legal challenges filed by various groups. Partner Charles J. Cooper commented, “This is an important milestone in Michigan’s progress toward a colorblind admissions policy. We will continue to defend the judgment of Michigan’s voters against further challenges beyond the current cycle to overturn this vital change to their state constitution.”

CIR and Cooper & Kirk are representing Eric Russell, a 29 year old Michigan resident who is applying to the University of Michigan Law School. Russell is defending his right under the Michigan Constitution to have his application considered without regard to race, as provided by the voters when they set December 23, 2006 as the effective date of Prop. 2. Russell claims there is no authority under federal law to delay implementation of the new amendment until next year’s admissions cycle. Russell commented, “This is tremendous news. I am very pleased with Justice Stevens’ decision.”