Republican presidential hopefuls hailed the U.S. Supreme Court’s striking down of racial preferences in college admissions, with one calling affirmative action a “lie from the pit of hell.”
The high court’s June 29 decision declared illegal Harvard’s discriminatory practices against Asian Americans in favor of blacks.
Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., who is black, said that for too long affirmative action was “sending the message that somehow the color of your skin means that you will not be able to achieve your goals – from an educational perspective, from an income perspective or family formation – that is a lie from the pit of hell.
“We will not be judged solely by the color of our skin. That’s what the ruling said today. But that is the story of America. That is a story of American progress, and we can all celebrate that today.”
Scott’s remarks were in response to criticism of the court’s ruling from former President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle.
Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina and U.N. ambassador under Trump – who, like Scott, is vying for the 2024 GOP presidential nod – also praised the ruling, saying America is looked up to globally for being the land of opportunity.
“The world admires America because we value freedom & opportunity. (The Supreme Court) re-affirmed those values today. Picking winners & losers based on race is fundamentally wrong,” Haley tweeted. “This decision will help every student – no matter their background – have a better opportunity to achieve the American dream.”
Former vice president and presidential candidate Mike Pence told CBS’s Face the Nation it’s time for affirmative action to end.
“I mean, there may have been a time when affirmative action was necessary simply to open the doors of all of our schools and universities, but I think that time has passed,” Pence said, according to Politico.
Former President Trump kept to form, announcing his approval of the court’s decision, complete with an exclamation point.
“People with extraordinary ability and everything else necessary for success, including future greatness for our Country, are finally being rewarded,” Trump wrote in a post on his Truth Social platform, as reported by The Hill. “This is the ruling everyone was waiting and hoping for and the result was amazing. It will also keep us competitive with the rest of the world. Our greatest minds must be cherished and that’s what this wonderful day has brought. We’re going back to all merit-based – and that’s the way it should be!”
Radio host Larry Elder, who is also black and is considered a GOP presidential longshot, applauded the decision via Twitter: “Discrimination to fix historical discrimination is still discrimination. ‘Affirmative action’ is divisive, undermines merit and does more harm than good.”
Elder noted that even in the liberal states of Michigan and California, voters have already outlawed the practice of affirmative action in college and university admissions.