Utah Affirmative Action Amendment (2010)
|Not on Ballot|
| This measure did not or |
will not appear on a ballot
Specifically, the legislation called for asking voters if language from the 1964 Civil Rights Act should be added to Utah's Constitution. The language would have prohibited "the State, public institutions of higher education, and political subdivisions from discriminating against or granting preferential treatment to any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting."
The measure was sponsored by Rep. Curtis Oda and co-sponsored by Rep. Carl Wimmer. "You're promoting discrimination to stop discrimination. You're telling these people, 'You're not good enough to do it on your own. Let's just hand it to you,'" said Oda in an interview with The Salt Lake Tribune. Oda called affirmative action a failure.
Shortly following the introduction of HJR 24 a group of Utah community members mobilized to stop the proposed amendment. Speakers at an education forum at Salt Lake City's Horizonte Instructional Center on February 27 said affirmative action was not "reverse racism."
Path to the ballot
The constitutional amendment required a two-thirds vote in the Utah Legislature in order to qualify for the November 2010. An amended version of the bill required a series of public hearings on the issue during Summer 2010. However, on March 11, supporters said they were unable to acquire sufficient votes in the House. The movement stalled out with the vote count at "49 and a maybe," said Jeff Hartley, who had been hired by the American Civil Rights Institute to lobby for the amendment.
- The Leadership Conference,"Utah Legislature Rejects Bid to Put Anti-Equal Opportunity Measure on 2010 Ballot," March 12, 2010
- Deseret News,"Utah Legislature: Leaders say affirmative action amendment lacks votes," March 10, 2010
- The Salt Lake Tribune,"Utah backers of amendment to ban affirmative action abandon fight," March 11, 2010
- The Salt Lake Tribune,"Legislators seek constitutional amendment against affirmative action," February 11, 2010
- Daily Herald,"Oda resolution will place question on Nov. ballot," February 16, 2010
- Deseret News,"Utah Legislature: Affirmative action ban gains backing after changes," March 1, 2010
- The Salt Lake Tribune,"Group mobilizes to fight ban on affirmative action," February 27, 2010
- Deseret News,"Utah Legislature: Affirmative action resolution rewritten," February 28, 2010
- Deseret News,"Utah Legislature: Public hearings added to anti-affirmative action measure," February 26, 2010
State of Utah
Salt Lake City (capital)
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