Cite as: 539 U. S. 306 (2003)
Opinion of the Court
Justice O'Connor delivered the opinion of the Court.
This case requires us to decide whether the use of race as a factor in student admissions by the University of Michigan Law School (Law School) is unlawful.
Daniel Woodring; for the Cato Institute by Robert A. Levy, Timothy Lynch, James L. Swanson, and Samuel Estreicher; for the Center for Equal Opportunity et al. by Roger Clegg and C. Mark Pickrell; for the Center for Individual Freedom by Renee L. Giachino; for the Center for New Black Leadership by Clint Bolick, William H. Mellor, and Richard D. Komer; for the Center for the Advancement of Capitalism by David Reed Burton; for the Claremont Institute Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence by Edwin Meese III; for the Michigan Association of Scholars by William F. Mohrman; for the National Association of Scholars by William H. Allen, Oscar M. Garibaldi, and Keith A. Noreika; for the Pacific Legal Foundation by John H. Findley; for Law Professor Larry Alexander et al. by Erik S. Jaffe; and for the Reason Foundation by Martin S. Kaufman.
Briefs of amici curiae urging affirmance were filed for the State of Maryland et al. by J. Joseph Curran, Jr., Attorney General of Maryland, Andrew H. Baida, Solicitor General, Mark J. Davis and William F. Brock-man, Assistant Attorneys General, Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General of New York, Caitlin J. Halligan, Solicitor General, Michelle Aronowitz, Deputy Solicitor General, and Julie Mathy Sheridan and Sachin S. Pandya, Assistant Solicitors General, and by the Attorneys General for their respective jurisdictions as follows: Terry Goddard of Arizona, Bill Lockyer of California, Ken Salazar of Colorado, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Lisa Madigan of Illinois, Thomas J. Miller of Iowa, G. Steven Rowe of Maine, Thomas F. Reilly of Massachusetts, Mike Hatch of Minnesota, Mike McGrath of Montana, Patricia A. Madrid of New Mexico, Roy Cooper of North Carolina, W. A. Drew Edmondson of Oklahoma, Hardy Myers of Oregon, Patrick Lynch of Rhode Island, William H. Sorrell of Vermont, Iver A. Stridiron of the Virgin Islands, Christine O. Gregoire of Washington, Darrell V. McGraw, Jr., of West Virginia, and Peggy A. Lautenschlager of Wisconsin; for the State of New Jersey by David Samson, Attorney General, Jeffrey Burstein, Assistant Attorney General, and Donna Arons and Anne Marie Kelly, Deputy Attorneys General; for New York City Council Speaker A. Gifford Miller et al. by Jack Greenberg and Saul B. Shapiro; for the City of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, et al. by Victor A. Bolden and Nelson A. Diaz; for the American Bar Association by Paul M. Dodyk and Rowan D. Wilson; for the American Educational Re-
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