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National

Top court upholds affirmative action for colleges

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Opening sequence

National

Top court upholds affirmative action for colleges

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00:00:01
>> On the same day the Supreme Court dealt a death blow to President Obama's immigration plan. The justices also upholding the use of affirmative action in college admissions. The court on Thursday rejecting a challenge from a white woman. Who said she was passed over by the University of Texas in favor of less qualified Black and Hispanic students.
00:00:20
The case was one of the oldest on the High Court's docket. Abigail Fisher, now 26, originally brought the suit in 2008.>> I don't believe that students should be treated differently based on their race. Justice Anthony Kennedy, who's tried to strike down every other affirmative action program reviewed by the court.
00:00:37
Made a break from his conservative colleagues and was the deciding vote in Thursday's 4-3 ruling. In writing the majority opinion, he noted that other attempts to increase the university's diversity had failed. Reuters' Jon Herskovitz is at the school's Austin campus.>> One of the ways that the university is trying to boost diversity is to admit the top 10% in the high school classes to the university regardless of race or any other certain background.
00:01:02
Trying to make a race neutral admissions process, but the university realized that didn't achieve the goals that they were looking for. So, they allowed race to be one factor in considering admissions to the other part of the student body. The campus itself is a rather left leaning island in the middle of a rabid conservative state.
00:01:22
And there was significant support for the decision that allows the affirmative action program to stay. People on campus think that it's an appropriate way to boost minority attendance. And they see diversity as a goal that the university should be pursuing.>> The case avoiding the fate of other supreme court decisions that ended in deadlock this session.
00:01:44
Since the death of Antonin Scalia in February left the justices evenly split between liberals and conservatives. Elena Kagan, who worked on the case in a previous job, recused herself from the ruling. In his 50 page dissent, Justice Samuel Alito argued that the school hadn't demonstrated the need for race based admissions.
00:02:03
And called the policy quote affirmative action gone berserk.