• NY Attorney General Letitia James Joins Coalition Of AGs Defending DEI Programs From "Unfounded Attacks"

    June 21, 2024
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    NY AG Letitia James.
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    New York State Attorney General Letitia James, as part of a coalition of 19 blue state attorneys general, issued a letter to the American Bar Association (ABA), Fortune 100 company CEOs and other leaders to refute what they allege are "baseless attacks" on diversity, equity and inclusion ("DEI") efforts and programs.

    The letter was a response to one sent to the ABA by a group of 20 red state AGs on June 3rd.

    The June 3rd letter said that the Supreme Court’s decision made in Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. v. President & Fellows of Harvard College (SFFA) required significant adjustments to the ABA's current Standards and Rules of Procedure for Approval of Law Schools.

    "Standard 206, Diversity and Inclusion—fails to account for SFFA and, by all appearances, directs law-school administrators to violate both the Constitution and Title VII," said the June 3rd letter.

    The June 3rd letter further argues that "Standard 206, in both current and revised forms, forces law schools to play a high-stakes guessing game about how to pass ABA muster without violating the law."

    "The bottom line: Whatever the intent behind Standard 206 might be, it cannot lawfully be implemented in its current or revised forms. The Supreme Court has made clear that well-intentioned racial discrimination is just as illegal as invidious discrimination," said the June 3rd letter which concluded by urging the ABA to bring Standard 206 in line with federal law’s prohibition of race-based admissions and hiring.

    The June 3rd request didn't sit well with NY AG James and the other blue state AGs in her coalition.

    The letter that James' coalition sent to the ABA, Fortune 100 CEOs, and "Other Organizations Unfairly Targeted for their Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion" alleged the June 3rd letter "falsely claimed" the ABA's DEI standard violated SFFA.

    The blue state coalition letter assured that DEI initiatives "remain legal" and called the red state AGs' efforts "cynical attempts by opponents" to undermine DEI efforts with "false claims" that DEI programs are discriminatory.

    AG James and the blue state coalition alleged that companies with diverse leadership teams are associated with higher financial returns and higher social and environmental impact scores.

    Except the December 5, 2023, McKinsey study that the blue state coalition referenced has been debunked by Econ Journal Watch in a 30-page paper:

    "We do not find statistically significant relations between McKinsey’s inverse normalized Herfindahl-Hirschman measures of executive racial/ethnic diversity at mid-2020 and either industry-adjusted earnings before interest and taxes margin or industry-adjusted sales growth, gross margin, return on assets, return on equity, and total shareholder return over the prior five years 2015–2019. Combined with the erroneous reverse-causality nature of McKinsey’s tests, our inability to quasi-replicate their results suggests that despite the imprimatur given to McKinsey’s studies, they should not be relied on to support the view that US publicly traded firms can expect to deliver improved financial performance if they increase the racial/ethnic diversity of their executives."

    The blue state AGs then go on, somewhat laughably, to argue that DEI efforts are "popular among Americans" and even suggest that most consumers want companies to support racial justice by following up with concrete action to address social issues.

    Apparently the blue state AGs haven't seen the campaigns calling for DEI to DIE because you "didn't earn it."

    Instead, the blue state AGs take the hostile position of calling anyone opposed to their Marxist DEI agenda "opponents to equality" — the exact opposite of the truth.

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