Affirmative Action Victories in Michigan, California
An anti-affirmative action campaign in Michigan has experienced so many setbacks that it will now push back its plans by two years. The so-called Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, led by affirmative action opponent Ward Connerly, had attempted to gather enough signatures to place an anti-affirmative action initiative on the November 2004 ballot. However, “because of internal disorganization, internal discord, legal decisions, and Ward Connerly’s health problems … the intent now is to qualify for the  ballot,” said state Rep. Leon Drolet, R-Clinton Township, according to the Associated Press. The ballot initiative would have banned affirmative action policies aimed at increasing opportunities for women and people of color.
Connerly led the ultimately successful Proposition 209 campaign in California, which was opposed by a broad coalition of women’s rights and civil rights groups, including the Feminist Majority, the National Organization for Women, the YWCA, and the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund. As the Michigan initiative was attempting to do, Proposition 209 effectively ended affirmative action in government hiring, public contracting, and college admissions.
However, in the wake of the recent Supreme Court ruling upholding the use of affirmative action policies at the University of Michigan, the California state Assembly recently passed a bill that would allow universities to consider race, gender, and income in the admissions process, according to the Associated Press. Though opponents contend that the bill would violate Proposition 209, Assembly member Marco Firebaugh (D-South Gate), the sponsor of the bill, said, “[T]his measure gives flexibility to [the University of California and California State University] to consider [factors such as race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin] in considering a student. They may not be the determining factor,” AP reports.
6/29/2015 The Supreme Court Just Saved Texas Abortion Clinics - The Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 today to put a temporary hold on a Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that would have closed all but 9 of the state's abortion clinics in Texas.
The order from the Supreme Court comes in response to an emergency request filed by women's health care providers on the behalf of Texas women earlier this month asking the Court to stay House Bill 2, which would have taken effect as law on Wednesday. . . .
6/26/2015 Supreme Court Declares Marriage Equality a Constitutional Right - In a 5-4 decision delivered by Justice Anthony Kennedy this morning, the Supreme Court of the United States declared that same-sex couples fundamentally have equal protections under the Constitution.
The Supreme Court held that the Fourteenth Amendment requires all 50 states to both license a marriage and recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex. . . .
6/26/2015 President Obama Delivers Moving Eulogy in Charleston - The nation is remembering the nine victims of the Emanuel AME Church mass shooting this week, as President Obama gave an unforgettable eulogy for State Senate Reverend Clementa Pinckney.
President Obama knew Reverend Pinckney personally, meeting him during his 2008 election campaign. . . .