Alabama AG calls on the American Bar Association to end its policy requiring racial discrimination in law school admissions

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall has announced that he has joined 20 other attorneys general from across the country in sending a letter to the American Bar Association demanding an end to discriminatory policies affecting law students .

The accrediting body of American law schools, the ABA, currently forces institutions to choose between obtaining accreditation through racial discrimination, denying some of the most qualified candidates, or adhering to the Constitution.

“Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark decision making clear that ‘the core purpose of the Equal Protection Clause’ is to ‘eliminate all government-imposed discrimination on the basis of race,’” Marshall said. “It is ironic that an organization committed to a mission of ‘defending freedom and pursuing justice’ seeks to justify discrimination against prospective law students based on the color of their skin.”

The ABA’s mandate is set out in Standard 206 of its Standards and Regulations for the Approval of Law Schools 2023–2024. The letter explains that Standard 206 cannot be reconciled with the recent United States Supreme Court ruling in Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. v. President & Fellows of Harvard College (SFFA).

Marshall said that even if the intent behind Standard 206’s racial preference regime is benign, it cannot be lawfully implemented in its current or revised form. The ABA is reportedly considering revisions to the standard as a result of the ruling, but the proposed changes include the unlawful requirement that law schools engage in admissions and hiring based on race.

Marshall was joined in the lawsuit by attorneys generals from Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah , and Virginia.

Austen Shipley is a writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on X @ShipleyAusten

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