Adarrand Essay

Facts: The United States Department of Transportation was seeking subcontractors for a
guardrailproject. This job paid $20,000 to whoever won the bid. Under the federal contract, the
primecontractor receives financial incentives for employing subcontractors that are considered a
disadvantaged business. Adarand, a local business that specialized in guardrailing, bid on the
project. Gonzales, a certified minority business, also bid on the job and at a higher rate than it’s
competitor, Adarand. Although Adarand’s bid was less, the work was givento the minority
business. Adarand may have been chosenhad it not been for the compensation given to
the prime contractor for choosing Gonzales.
Issue: Is the disadvantaged business classified as “disadvantaged” on race alone, and
doesit violate the 14th Amendment’s clause of equal protection?
Rule of law: There are several different laws used in this case. Both the 5th and 14th
Amendment are interpreted the same. The Fifth Amendment’s Due Process Clause contains an
equal protection clause that states “no state shall make or enforce an law which shall abridge the
privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person
oflife, liberty, or property without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its
jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” The Small Business Act defines economically
disadvantaged businesses as those who are unable to establish capital and credit like businesses
that are not socially disadvantaged. The businesses being identified as “disadvantaged” are not
solelyidentified by race only. The Executive Order 10925 prohibits federal government
contractorsfrom discriminating on account of race. Part III section 301 (2) states the
contractorwill, in all solicitations and advertisements for employees placed by or on
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behalfof the contractor, state...