For Immediate Release
April 6, 2020
Livingston, New Jersey:
On March 30, 2020, Idaho Governor Brad Little signed House Bill 400 (H440) into law, making the Gem State the 9th to adopt a statewide ban on race-based affirmative action. The Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE) hails this legislative development in Idaho as a significant landmark and commends the bill’s proponents led by Mr. Ward Connerly and the American Civil Rights Institute (ACRI). Their excellent work in public advocacy and legislature lobbying for true equality have been an integral part of various coalitions in California, Washington, Michigan, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona, and Colorado.
In essence, H440 adds a new section (67-5909A) to the Idaho Code, providing that “the state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.” This new law strictly observes the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution granting the equal protection of the laws, as well as Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race in federally funded programs. H440 promotes true equal treatment for all its residents, including the interests and stakes of Asian Americans for equal education rights.
The passage of H440 in Idaho reflects prevalent public opinions of our nation. According to a March 2019 survey by the Pew Research Center, nearly three in four Americans, including 62% of black, 65% of Hispanic and 58% of Asian respondents, say colleges and universities should not consider race or ethnicity in admissions.
Mr. Yukong Zhao, President of AACE, commented: “H440’s passage in Idaho is an exciting development in safeguarding equal education and employment rights for Americans. It surely advances the equal protection of the laws for the state’s 28,000 Asian Americans. More importantly, the new law adds to the national landscape of promoting equality and combating racial discrimination in legislations.”
Dr. Wenyuan Wu, telephone: (786) 393-8028, email: [email protected].
Ms. Swann Lee, telephone: (617) 906-6380, email: [email protected].
About the AACE: www.asianamericanforeducation.org
Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE) is a non-political, nonprofit, grassroots national organization, the proven leader in fighting for Asian-American children’s equal educational rights. On May 15, 2015, the founders of AACE united 64 Asian-American organizations and jointly filed a civil rights complaint with the Department of Education (DOE) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to request that they conduct investigations into Harvard University’s discriminatory admissions practices against Asian-American applicants. As the largest joint action taken by Asian-American communities over the last few decades, this complaint is now being investigated by the Justice Department. Over the years, we have advanced the cause of equal education rights for the Asian-American community. In July 2018, the federal government adopted our policy recommendations by rescinding Obama era guidance that promoted racial balancing and acquiesced to racial discrimination in college admissions.