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December 14, 2000 - Image 1

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The Michigan Daily, 2000-12-14

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One hundred ten years ofeditonz dfreedom

Thursday
December 14, 2000

11

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IUdge upholds ' admissions
But previous grid system ruled unconstitutional

Lisa Koivu
i Jaimie Winkler
iy Staff Reporters
A federal judge yesterday upheld the Univer-
"s use of race as a factor in undergraduate
nissions.
[n his opinion ruling on a lawsuit three years
the making, U.S.
strict Judge
trick Duggan
tte that "diversity IAL
astitutes a coin-
ling governmen-
interest in the
ntext of higher w
acation justifying
use of race as one factor in the admissions
cess."
University President Lee Bollinger has
ight to preserve the University's policies
ce the cases were filed less than a year after
took office.
'I'm just very gratified that this is the way

things have turned out. This is a great decision
for higher education and society. The central
holding in my view is the absolute clear affir-
mation of the system that has been in place,"
Bollinger said.
Nearly one month after the University and
its opponents argued proposed motions for
summary judgment, Duggan released his opin-
ion upholding the use of race as a factor in
admissions in the College of Literature, Sci-
ence and the Arts. In doing so, Duggan decided
that no trial was necessary.
He referred repeatedly to the Regents of the
University of Califrnia v. Bakke decision,
which first allowed using race as a factor in
areas where there is a compelling interest for
diversity.,
In the opinion, based on the briefs submitted
by the University, CIR and a group of interven-
ing students, the court ruled the current system
is constitutional, but the former "grid" system,
used from 1995-98, is unconstitutional. Justice
Lewis Powell's opinion in the 1978 Bakke case
also states that only a plus-factor system,

where prospective minority students receive a
boost on their applications, would be constitu-
tional. Powell ruled that a system of quotas is
not constitutional.
Duggan also built off of the most recent
affirmation of that decision, Smith v. University
of Washington. Duggan writes that although his
assessment isn't identical to the Ninth Circuit's
interpretation of Justice Lewis Powell's opinion
in the Bakke case, "this Court reaches the same
ultimate conclusion."
The University's challenger, the Center for
Individual Rights, cited other cases in Texas
and Georgia that struck down the use of race as
a factor in those states. Duggan writes that
these courts "contend that, as a matter of law,
'diversity' and 'academic freedom' are not
compelling governmental interests that can
ever justify the use of race in the admission
process. This Court disagrees."
CIR will likely appeal Duggan's decision to
the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati
their spokesman said. Many think this case is
bound for the U.S. Supreme Court.

"This is a great decision for higher education and
society,"
- Lee Bollinger
University president

The current admissions system assigns
points to qualities that the University values.
Academics - including grade point average,
standardized test scores, high school curricu-
lum and an applicant's high school's reputation
- can account for up to 98 of a possible 150
points of the admissions worksheet. Students
can also receive 20 points for being either an
underrepresented minority or socio-economic
disadvantage among other things.
The grid system to which Duggan referred
used a student's computed selection index
score to determine acceptance or denial. The
grids show strong discrepancies between the
qualifications of minority and non-minority

students.
For example, the opinion cites in 1995 and
1996 that by applying the girds the University
would automatically reject non-minority appli-
cants with a GPA of 3.2-3.3 and an ACT score
of 18-20, while a minority with the same quali-
fications "would have most likely been admit-
ted," Duggan writes.
Duggan's judgment also granted qualified
immunity to former University President James
Duderstadt and Bollinger. Neither Duderstadt
nor Bollinger can be held personally responsi-
ble and indicted individually.
1n addition to arguing against compelling
See DECISION, Page 3

To servo nati
President-elect Bush promises to unite Americans
The Associated Press

Five, weeks after Election Day, George W. Bush at last
laid claim to the presidency last night with a pledge to
"seize this moment" and deliver reconciliation and unity to
a nation divided. Al Gore exited the tortuously close race,
exhorting the nation to put aside partisan rancor and sup-
port its new chief executive.
"I was not elected to serve one party, but to serve one
nation," America's soon-to-be 43rd president told Ameri-
cans in a nationally televised address from the chamber of
the Texas House of Representatives. The Texas governor
chose that setting, he said, because he had been able to work
there with Democrats and Republicans alike.
"Our nation must rise above a house divided," he said
hopefully, echoing a reference from Scripture spoken by
Abraham Lincoln
during the Civil
War. "Our votes
may differ, but not
our hopes." -
His wife, Laura,
beamed from the
sidelines, and got
her own standing ovation when Bush spoke of her future
role as first lady.
Bush was preceded by Gore, who delivered his call for
national unity in a televised concession.
"May God bless his stewardship of this country," the vice
president said of the Republican who vanquished him.
Gore, who called Bush to concede shortly before his
speech, joked that he had promised not to "call him back
this time," a reference to the concession he phoned to Bush
on Election Night and later withdrew.
Bush said it had been a "gracious call" from Gore, adding,
"I understand how difficult this moment must be" for him.
The two made plans to meet in Washington on Tuesday.
The world also prepared for a new American leader.
British Prime Minister Tony Blair sent Bush good wishes
shortly after Gore's concession. "It was a long and agonizing
wait for you. I'm very glad itsis finally settled," Blair said.
Victorious Republicans, in conciliatory and sympathetic
tones, prepared to claim control of both the White House
and Congress for the first time in more than 45 years, while
Democrats talked ominously of deep partisan schisms and
condemned the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that pushed
Gore from the race.
"This might be the end of a campaign, but it's just the
beginning of a much longer, difficult process," Sen. George
Voinovich (R-Ohio) said.
In a televised address that lasted less than 10 minutes,
Gore mixed words of unity with the unmistakable message
that he felt wronged by the Supreme Court ruling that
stopped the Florida recount and prompted his concession.
"While I strongly disagree with the court's decision, I
accept it,' he said. "I accept the finality of this outcome."
He allowed there would be time for disagreements down
the road, but said "now is the time to recognize that that
which unites us is greater than that which divides us."
Leaving the White House office that he soon will vacate,
Gore was greeted outside by cheering supporters who
chanted "Gore in Four," a hopeful wish for his political
revival in 2004.
Bush moved quickly into the breach, asking the Texas
Democratic House speaker to introduce him for his national
address. He told campaign chairman Don Evans to reach
out to Gore chairman William Daley - a move that led to
the scheduling of the two rivals' meeting next week. And he
dusted off transition plans laid dormant by the legal wran-
gling, as aides reminded reporters that a Democrat or two
were certain to join the Bush administration.
In his first act as president-elect, Bush will attend a
"prayer and hope" church service today in Austin, spokes-
woman Karen Hughes said. "He wants to start this on a
See BUSH, Page 4

ABOVE: Texas Gov. George W. Bush addresses the nation from the floor of the Texas House of
Representatives last night, an hour after Vice President Al Gore surrendered his battle for the
White House.
LEFT: Gore and his wife, Tipper, wave to supporters at the Old Executive Office Building.

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