Could Texas soon be back under federal Voting Rights Act supervision?

In October, federal judge Nelva Gonzalez Ramos of the Southern District of Texas issued a far-reaching opinion striking down Texas’ new Voter ID law on several grounds. She not only found that the law violated Section 2 of the Voting … Continue reading

How would you avoid disparate impact liability?

Disparate impact theory tells employers that they have broken the law when a concededly neutral hiring practice produces too many employees of one race and not enough of another. Let’s say you’re an employer looking to hire 20 people from … Continue reading

Make the Fair Housing Act fair: Remove disparate impact

On October 2, 2014, the United States Supreme Court granted review in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc.  When it did, the Court made it clear that it only wants to resolve one … Continue reading

Elite universities sued over race-based admissions

Yesterday, Harvard University and the University of North Carolina were sued over their race-based admissions practices. The complaints (here and here) describe, in detail, the divisive use of race at both universities. … Continue reading

President’s weekly report — November 14, 2014

Clean Water Act This week, we submitted comments on the Army Corps of Engineers and EPA’s proposed rule redefining the term “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act. The rule, if adopted, would be the largest expansion of power … Continue reading

Fifth Circuit denies rehearing en banc in Fisher v. University of Texas

The case of Abigail Fisher may be on its way to the Supreme Court a second time.  The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals denied her petition for rehearing en banc. Judge Garza filed a short dissent reiterating the points he made in his … Continue reading

There’s no such thing as “careful” discrimination

PLF friend Jennifer Gratz published an op-ed in the Washington Times today on the Administration’s desire to see racial preferences continue indefinitely.  Here’s a snippet: In today’s increasingly pluralistic society, race usually does not — and certainly should not — determine what … Continue reading

Moneyball Sentencing

University of New Mexico School of Law Professor Dawinder Sidhu has an excellent article available at SSRN about the criminal justice’s system increasing use of statistics to predict a defendant’s future dangerousness.  Professor Sidhu analogizes to the concept of Moneyball—or … Continue reading

What can Moneyball teach us about the debate over racial preferences?

Some things are accepted as so obvious that people rarely ask whether they are true. Take baseball for example. There used to be a time when fans and managers alike hyped up a pitcher as a “winner,” a batter as … Continue reading

The Leadership Conference tries hard to convince itself that Americans support the Voting Rights Act

Everyone knows that pollsters can design questions that elicit the results they want. Indeed, even very subtle changes in poll questions can show that Americans either support or disapprove of any particular person or policy. That’s why reputable polling organizations take great pains … Continue reading