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Affirmative action ban upheld in California court

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California's state ban on affirmative action -- the practice of using race, ethnicity and gender in admitting students to public colleges and universities -- was upheld in federal court on Monday. 

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Proposition 209, passed by voters in 1996, does not violate students' constitutional rights. The Monday ruling upholds a previous decision by the same court in 1997. 

Affirmative action supporters argued that the court should reconsider based on decisions to reinstate the policy elsewhere in the nation. Proponents say taking race out of the admissions process has caused campus diversity to suffer.