‘A Great Day For America’: 2024 GOP Presidential Candidates Praise SCOTUS For Affirmative Action Decision

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  • The 2024 Republican presidential candidates praised the U.S. Supreme Court Thursday after striking down affirmative action in two cases that challenged the constitutionality of race-based college admissions.
  • SCOTUS determined that affirmative action violates the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause, prompting several 2024 GOP hopefuls to argue it’s a win for freedom and equality in America, they told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
  • “‘Affirmative action’ is divisive, undermines merit and does more harm than good,” conservative radio personality Larry Elder told the DCNF.

Several 2024 Republican presidential candidates praised the U.S. Supreme Court Thursday for striking down affirmative action in college admissions via two cases against Harvard and the University of North Carolina.

SCOTUS ruled in the cases that challenged the constitutionality of race-based admissions, and determined that affirmative action violates the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. Many GOP presidential hopefuls reacted to the ruling, arguing that it’s a win for freedom and equality in statements provided to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“This is a great day for America. People with extraordinary ability and everything else necessary for success, including future greatness for our country, are finally being rewarded,” former President Donald Trump told the DCNF in a statement. “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!”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also commended the Court’s decision, and argued it put an end to “discrimination” in higher education.

“College admissions should be based on merit and applicants should not be judged on their race or ethnicity,” DeSantis wrote in a tweet. “The Supreme Court has correctly upheld the Constitution and ended discrimination by colleges and universities.”

Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley argued SCOTUS’ ruling will benefit students in the future and strengthens American values.

“The world admires America because we value freedom and opportunity. The Supreme Court reaffirmed those values today,” Haley said in a statement provided to the DCNF. “Picking winners and losers based on race is fundamentally wrong. This decision will help every student—no matter their background—have a better opportunity to achieve the American Dream.”

Businessman Vivek Ramaswamy echoed Haley’s sentiment, and argued he’d further restrict affirmative action if president. (RELATED: Supreme Court Strikes Down Affirmative Action Admissions)

“I’m glad the US Supreme Court finally ended one of the worst failed experiments in American history: affirmative action. Still, the ruling is likely to mark the beginning of a new era of ‘shadow’ racial balancing and quotas, where elite universities like Harvard and woke employers play games to suit their desires for preferences that benefit perceived ‘marginalized’ groups,” Ramaswamy told the DCNF in a statement. “If elected President, I have committed to repealing Lyndon Johnson’s ill-thought Executive Order 11246, which mandates that federal contractors– approximately 20% of the U.S. workforce—adopt race-based hiring preferences.”

“The trickle-down effect of this mandated affirmative action is sweeping. Top companies now regularly disfavor qualified applicants who happen to be white or Asian-American, which spawns resentment and condescension toward black and Hispanic hires. I will rescind this executive order and direct the Justice Department to prosecute illegal race-based preferences,” Ramaswamy added.

Conservative radio show personality Larry Elder applauded SCOTUS’ decision, and slammed affirmative action for being “divisive.”

“I oppose race based admissions to colleges and universities … discrimination to fix historical discrimination is still discrimination,” Elder told the DCNF. “‘Affirmative action’ is divisive, undermines merit and does more harm than good. When it has been put to voters in states like California and Michigan, it has been voted down. As for blacks and Hispanics having difficulty getting into the more competitive colleges, we should address the abysmal quality of urban K through 12 public schools. The left that bemoans this Supreme Court decision opposes school choice despite the fact that it offers parents and students options to improve test scores and graduation rates for black and Hispanics that Democrats purport to care so much about.”

Former Vice President Mike Pence commended the Supreme Court’s ruling, and touted his role in appointing several of the justices that assisted Thursday’s decision.

“There is no place for discrimination based on race in the United States, and I am pleased that the Supreme Court has put an end to this egregious violation of civil and constitutional rights in admissions processes, which only served to perpetuate racism,” Pence said in a statement provided to the DCNF. “I am honored to have played a role in appointing three of the Justices that ensured today’s welcomed decision, and as President I will continue to appoint judges who will strictly apply the law rather than twisting it to serve woke and progressive ends.”

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott reacted to SCOTUS’ decision on Fox News, and said the striking down of affirmative action is a “good day for American.”

“This is a day where we understand that being judged by the content of our character, not the color of our skin, is what our Constitution wants. We are continuing to work on performing this more perfect union. Today is better than yesterday. This year better than last year, this decade better than the last decade,” Scott said. “The progress we see in the nation is palpable. That’s good news for every single corridor of this nation and one that we should celebrate. I thank God almighty that America continues to work towards that concept of a more perfect union.”

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson also celebrated the striking down of affirmative action in the admissions process, but acknowledged the ruling doesn’t “end the goal of diversity on college campuses.”

“The recent Supreme Court decision reinforces the fundamental American principle of equality for all. It ends with finality the system of racial preferences and box-checking that unfairly categorized students based on their race, rather than their individual merits,” Hutchinson told the DCNF in a statement. “The decision to move away from race-based admissions is a significant step toward a more colorblind society. This is not to ignore the unique challenges faced by individuals of different races but to ensure that everyone is measured by their abilities and accomplishments, not by race.”

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, and Justice Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett joined in the 6-3 ruling. The court’s decision overruled a 2003 opinion that race could be a determining factor in the college admissions process.

“A benefit to a student who overcame racial discrimination, for example, must be tied to that student’s courage and determination,” Roberts wrote. “In otherwords, the student must be treated based on his or her experiences as an individual—not on the basis of race.”

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