BOSTON — A federal appeals court on Wednesday appeared skeptical of arguments that Harvard discriminates against Asian-American applicants, a claim made in a closely-watched lawsuit challenging the use of race as a factor in U.S. college admissions.
Circuit Court of Appeals panel in Boston questioned why it should conclude a trial judge wrongly rejected the claims by Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA), a nonprofit founded by anti-affirmative action activist Edward Blum.
Consovoy asked the court to consider how it would evaluate such low scores if they were given to well-qualified Black applicants for police or firefighting jobs.
Circuit Judge Sandra Lynch during the arguments pointed to past Supreme Court rulings that allow universities to consider race as one factor to remedy disadvantages minority students have faced because of racial prejudice.
“Harvard can in fact consider other things than merely class ranking and the academic achievements of the Asian-American applicants,” she said.