Law: A Blow to Affirmative Action

The court strikes down a plan to aid minority businesses

Ronald Reagan never made any secret of his distaste for affirmative action -- the attempt to remedy past discrimination by giving preferential treatment to minorities. Last week, only days after Reagan left office, his goal of reining in such programs got a major boost from the Supreme Court. By a 6-to-3 vote, the court struck down a Richmond ordinance intended to guarantee blacks and other minorities a greater share of the city's construction contracts. The decision not only threatened similar programs in 36 states but also potentially opened the door to legal attacks against other racially based government schemes.

The Richmond...

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