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Prop 16: Should Californians Overturn The State’s Ban On Affirmative Action?




People protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on October 10, 2012 as they are scheduled to hear arguments related to affirmative action.
People protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on October 10, 2012 as they are scheduled to hear arguments related to affirmative action.
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

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California’s voters will decide on the fate of twelve propositions in November, and here on AirTalk we’ve been taking you through the pros and cons of each one. 

Today, we take up Prop 16. If passed, it would allow the state government, public universities and other public entities in California to use affirmative action programs. Meaning they’d be able to grant preference to students and employees (or contracts with companies) on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity and national origin. 

Prop 16 repeals Prop 209, which was passed by California voters back in 1996 and banned the use of affirmative action in California's public sector.

Should Californians overturn Prop 16? What would be the impact on public hiring and higher education?

With guest host John Rabe

For a deeper dive Prop 16, join KPCC’s virtual event this coming Wednesday, September 23 at 6:30pm. To find out more, click here.

Guests: 

Adolfo Guzman-Lopez, education correspondent at KPCC; he tweets @AGuzmanLopez

Vincent Pan, co-chair of the Yes on 16 campaign; Co-Executive Director of Chinese for Affirmative Action, a community based civil rights organization 

Betty Tom Chu, the honorary co-chair of Californians for Equal Rights, the No on Prop. 16 campaign; she is the founder of the first Chinese-American savings bank East West and the first Chinese-American woman in Southern California to pass the Bar exam