Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on the Injunction Halting President Trump’s Executive Order on Race and Sex Stereotyping
December 23, 2020

 “We applaud the decision by U.S. District Court Judge Beth Labson Freeman to issue a nationwide preliminary injunction halting enactment of President Trump’s “Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping” executive order as it pertains to requirements for federal contractors and grants. Colleges and universities are completely opposed to race and sex stereotyping. But we are equally opposed to politically motivated investigations that encourage the filing of frivolous, meritless complaints.

As we noted when we called on the president to withdraw this executive order, it is sweepingly overbroad and already has disrupted the planning and delivery of critical diversity training programs that ensure more respectful and productive work and learning environments. More fundamentally, it is misaligned with core values of American higher education and our nation. As Judge Freeman noted in her opinion, the executive order is “a content-based restriction on protected speech,” and stressed that enjoining the order’s violation of constitutional rights “sharply” outweighs any legitimate competing governmental interests.

This ruling will halt the harm being done by this misguided order while President-elect Biden prepares to take office. We urge the president-elect to make a formal repeal of this executive order one of the first actions of his presidency.”