Affirmative Action for the Privileged in Texas

Affirmative Action for the Privileged in Texas
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Oh, the irony. The University of Texas has long been ground zero in the fight against affirmative action. Racial and ethnic preferences have drawn steady fire, but the school system’s helping hand to the children of wealthy, connected families has received less scrutiny.

Watchdog.org changed that with a robust series – at least six dozen articles and counting – that is exposing a pay-to-play scheme built on preference for the privileged. Combining sources at the state legislature and university system with a proprietary “database that tracked over a decade’s worth of academic data from students admitted to UT” reporter Jon Cassidy has linked “each under-qualified student to a powerful lawmaker or state official.”

Cassidy writes:

At least 764 applicants initially denied admission to the University of Texas [2009-2014] were admitted thanks to a backdoor program for the wealthy and politically connected administered by former president Bill Powers.

More than 200 of those applicants were admitted despite having their applications cancelled by the Admissions Office.

In another installment, Cassidy reports on the pushback to his revelations:

Two Democratic lawmakers from Houston have a problem with the corruption of admissions at the University of Texas. Their problem is somebody found out about it.

So, Sen. Rodney Ellis and Rep. Carol Alvarado have introduced companion bills aimed at shutting down the specific legal mechanism that Watchdog.org used to uncover dozens of underwhelming and politically connected UT Law grads who repeatedly failed the bar.

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