Ominous Poll Results on Public Referendum That Would Ban Race-Sensitive Admissions at the University of Michigan

We are just about one month from Election Day and a recent poll shows the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative gaining strength among likely voters. The initiative would ban the use of race in admissions decisions at state universities in Michigan. A poll by The Detroit News finds that 48 percent of respondents said they would vote to approve the measure compared to 37 percent who oppose it.

Many observers believe that the wording of the proposal will make it more appealing to uninformed voters. The initiative asks voters if they want to “outlaw preferential treatment to individuals or groups, on the basis of minority status or gender, in government and in college admissions.” Similar wording on Proposition 209 in California resulted in a higher “Yes” vote than earlier poll numbers had indicated.

Both sides plan major advertising campaigns prior to the election.