What the end of affirmative action would mean for U.S. colleges

The Supreme Court last week announced it would hear two cases challenging affirmative action in college admissions, a move that could signal the impending end of race being used as a consideration for which applicants are admitted to elite American universities.

The two suits — both brought by Students for Fair Admissions, a group run by a conservative legal activist, Edward Blum — claim that using race as a part of the college selection process violates protections against discrimination found in the Constitution and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. These arguments are similar to the ones used in previous challenges to affirmative action that have been brought to the Supreme Court dating back to the 1970s.

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