MSNBC’s Alex Witt Asks Whether The Supreme Court Deserves ‘Blowback’ For ‘Defying’ What ‘Majority Of Americans’ Want

Screenshot MSNBC

Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
Font Size:

MSNBC host Alex Witt asked Thursday whether the Supreme Court deserves “blowback” for “defying” public opinion in making its decisions.

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that affirmative action is unconstitutional in two lawsuits brought against Harvard and the University of North Carolina. The cases challenged the universities’ use of racial preferences during the admissions process.

George Mason University Assistant Professor of Law Jennifer Mascott broke down the gist of the case before saying the Supreme Court has handed down “blockbuster constitutional decisions” over the past year, such as Roe v. Wade in June 2022.

“Jennifer, let me ask you, you’re probably familiar with the country’s attitude toward affirmative action, and the fact that the majority of this country wanted to keep affirmative action in place,” Witt began. “I realize it is not up to the justices to necessarily look at polls when they’re writing their decisions and analyzing the way they’re going to think, but should the Supreme Court now expect — fairly so — a lot of blowback, two years in a row now, defying the vast majority of Americans in their rulings?” (RELATED: Chief Justice Roberts Stressed Dangers To The Supreme Court – Here’s Why Experts Think They Could Get Worse)

“Well, even the ruling that a lot of folks adhere to today, the Grutter [v. Bollinger] ruling from about 20 years ago, said that hopefully there would be an end point and a point at which we would continue to progress and not have to give such a categorial look or consideration to one factor in comparison to others,” Mascott said.

A recent Pew Research poll found 50% of Americans disapprove of affirmative action in college admissions while 33% support taking race and ethnicity into account. When broken down among party lines, 74% of Republicans disapproved of the policy while 29% of Democrats disapproved, according to the poll. The poll was conducted between March 27-April 2 among 5,079 adults with a +/- 1.7% margin of error.

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was the target of an assassination attempt following the leaked draft opinion of Roe v. Wade in June 2022. Police arrested a California man armed with a handgun, knife and pepper spray outside the justice’s home. Kavanaugh was also forced to exit through the rear of a Washington, D.C., restaurant in July 2022 after protesters swarmed the front.