Posted on October 10, 2012 at 6:29 AM
Wednesday, Oct 10 at 5:30 PM
AUSTIN -- The Supreme Court will begin listening to oral arguments Wednesday morning in a case challenging affirmative action at the University of Texas. The justices must decide whether affirmative action is necessary in undergraduate admissions policies.
The lawsuit stems back to 2008 when a student says she didn't get accepted at UT. Abigail Fisher claims the university turned her away because she is white.
Initially a court ruled against her but in an appeal, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case.
The case dubbed Fisher v. University of Texas, could result in the overturn of a 2003 ruling in which the court said universities could use race as a factor in admissions.
UT has said it does factor in race and ethnicity when it comes to admissions, but says it's only one of many factors. In February, after the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case, UT President Bill Powers released a statement: "The University is firmly committed to a holistic admissions policy that is narrowly tailored to achieve the educational benefits of a diverse student body."
About two-thirds of all undergraduate students accepted into UT are enrolled under a state law for automatic admission based on a student's class rank in high school.
The ruling on Fisher V. University of Texas will come be determined by eight of the nine Justices on the bench. Justice Elena Kagan recused herself and won't be in court.