(The Center Square) – Congressional Republicans are urging the University of Missouri to ignore Democrats’ calls to skirt the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action in college admissions.
In a letter to the University of Missouri, U.S. Sen. Eric Schmitt, and Reps. Eric Burlison and Mark Alford, point out that the Supreme Court ruling deemed policies requiring consideration of an applicant’s race in admissions to be unconstitutional.
Democratic U.S. Reps. Emanuel Cleaver and Cori Bush earlier this month sent a letter to University of Missouri President Mun Y. Choi in favor of of using race in admissions.
“As duly elected Members of Congress representing over 1.5 million Missourians, we implore you to restore race-based scholarships, consider the experience of race in admissions, and emphasize recruitment to underserved communities,” they wrote.
The Supreme Court rulings involved lawsuits against Harvard University and the University of North Carolina. The lawsuits were filed by Students For Fair Admissions on behalf of Asian students claiming they were discriminated against in the admissions process.
“To revert back to putting an applicant’s race in the evaluated criteria for the admissions process would not just go against the Supreme Court’s decision, but it would tell potential students that what they look like is just as important as how prepared they are to go to college,” the Republicans wrote in their letter. “A student’s admission to college should be based solely on their academic and extracurricular merit, not physical attributes.”
Based on this, the Republicans argued that “there is no logical reasoning” for going back to the way things were prior to the Supreme Court decision. To do so would only “degrade the credibility of the university,” the legislators warned.
“As we understand, since the ruling was delivered in June, the University has rightly followed the law regarding the consideration of race in its admissions process,” wrote Schmitt, Burlison and Alford. “We contend their letter should be entirely disregarded as it only serves as a distraction from the greater education the University of Missouri System offers.”