Based on the breakdown of its conservative and liberal wings, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule either 5-3 or 4-4 sometime before the end of June in an affirmative action case involving undergraduate admissions at the University of Texas.
A 4-4 tie would, in effect, affirm a lower court ruling that upheld the Austin flagship’s consideration of race and ethnicity. A 5-3 ruling against UT could take a few forms: a reversal of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, a decision to send the case back to that court for further review, perhaps even a wholesale rejection of the high court’s reasoning in a 2003 ruling that narrowly upheld racial and ethnic preferences at the University of Michigan.
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