Majority of Americans Support Supreme Court’s Decision on Race in College Admissions

According to a recent ABC News/Ipsos poll using Ipsos’ KnowledgePanel, the majority of Americans support the Supreme Court’s decision to limit the use of race in college admissions, while the country is more divided on other high-profile rulings and increasingly views the court as driven more by politics than the law.

In cases questioning whether public and private colleges and universities can continue to consider race as one criterion among many in student admissions, the Supreme Court on Thursday imposed additional constraints on affirmative action programs. About 52% of the population supports the Supreme Court’s decision to limit the consideration of race in college admissions, while 32% disagree and 16% are unsure.

Seventy-five percent of Republicans and 58 percent of independents support the verdict, while only 26 percent of Democrats do. And the gaps between the various races are wide. The majority of whites (60%) and Asians (58%), but only a quarter of blacks (25%), agree with the Supreme Court’s decision to restrict the use of race in college admissions.

There is an even split among Hispanics, with 40% in favor and 40% opposed. Despite widespread support for the decision to stop affirmative action in higher education, fewer Americans believe students of color, particularly Black and Hispanic students, have an equal chance of being admitted to the college of their choice than do white and Asian students.

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The majority of Americans (67%) believe that white and Asian students have a level playing field, while only a minority (47%) share this view regarding Black and Hispanic pupils. While the Supreme Court is out of session for the summer, 53% of Americans hold the view that the nation’s top court makes decisions based more on the justices’ personal political beliefs than on the letter of the law, while 14% are unsure.

Seventy-six percent of Democrats and fifty-one percent of independents think the Supreme Court makes decisions based on the party affiliations of the justices, while just thirty-six percent of Republicans hold this view. In a study conducted by ABC News/Ipsos in January 2022, 38% of Americans said they believed the justices ruled primarily based on the law, while 43% said they believed the court ruled based on their political opinions.

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In the same week that the Supreme Court essentially banned affirmative action in college admissions, the court also ruled against President Joe Biden’s plan to forgive the debt of more than 43 million American borrowers who had taken out student loans. 45% of Americans agree with the Supreme Court’s decision to invalidate Biden’s plan to cancel student loans, while 40% disagree, according to a recent ABC News/Ipsos poll.

While 71% of Republicans and 49% of independents approved with the Supreme Court’s ruling, only 17% of Democrats did. Older Americans are more inclined to approve of this move. Among respondents, 61% were 65 and over, 50% were between the ages of 50 and 64, 40% were between the ages of 30 and 49, and 31% were younger than 30.

“I know there are millions of Americans, millions of Americans in this country who feel disappointed and discouraged, or even a little bit angry about the Court’s decision today on student debt. And I must admit, I do, too,” Biden said on Friday following the decision.

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Although the Supreme Court ruled against Vice President Biden’s plan to cancel student loans, President Trump assured the American people on Friday that he will continue to pursue debt forgiveness via the Higher Education Act.The White House claims that Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has begun rulemaking on this latest attempt at debt relief, although it is unclear who would benefit, how much benefit would be provided, and whether or not the plan can withstand legal challenges.

This week, the Supreme Court issued another landmark ruling, this time siding with an evangelical Christian web designer in a case about whether or not creative firms can refuse to service LGBTQ+ consumers on the basis of free expression. A recent ABC/Ipsos poll found nearly a 50/50 split on this issue, with 43% of Americans approving of the choice, 42% disapproving, and 14% unsure.

Once again, there was a wide discrepancy in people’s assessments of the position based on their political leanings. While 68% of Republicans and 49% of independents support the move, only 15% of Democrats do. People under the age of 50, people of color, and females were also less inclined to support this decision.

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