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Black caucus member: Scalia's race comments 'shocking,' 'abhorrent'

Black caucus member: Scalia's race comments 'shocking,' 'abhorrent'
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A member of the Congressional Black Caucus has invited Justice Antonin Scalia to tour African-American colleges in Maryland after he suggested during oral arguments that black students may sometimes belong in "less-advanced" schools than whites.

Rep. Donna EdwardsDonna F. EdwardsDemocratic Senate candidate blasts own party for racial 'foghorn' Autoworkers' union endorsing Van Hollen in MD Senate race Dem leaders' hard sell pays off on omnibus MORE (D-Md.), who is running for the Senate, called Scalia’s comments offensive and unacceptable.

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“It is shocking that such abhorrent comments about African Americans were made by a U.S. Supreme Court justice,” she said in a statement.

“I would like to give Justice Scalia the benefit of the doubt that he spoke out of naiveté, and that is why I invited him to tour Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in Maryland.”  

On Wendesday, during oral arguments in a case challenging the race-based admissions program at the University of Texas at Austin, Scalia said some people contend that “it does not benefit African- Americans to get them into the University of Texas where they do not do well, as opposed to having them go to a less­-advanced school, a slower-­track school where they do well.”

“One of the briefs pointed out that most of the black scientists in this country don't come from schools like the University of Texas,” Scalia said.

In her letter, Edwards said Scalia would benefit from joining her on a tour of Bowie State University, Coppin State University, Morgan State University and the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore. 

“Seeing their facilities in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields and talking with their leaders, faculty, and students first-hand, I know you will gain insight and see how they are producing highly qualified graduates needed to help maintain America’s national security and technological competitiveness in an ever-changing 21st Century economy,” she said. 

Scalia's comments came in the the case Fisher v. the University of Texas at Austin.