SACRAMENTO (AP) — Voters would reconsider affirmative action programs at California’s public universities in November under a proposed constitutional amendment approved by the state Senate.

SCA5 would remove certain prohibitions in place since 1996, when voters approved Proposition 209.

The amendment approved Thursday would delete Proposition 209 provisions that prohibit the state from giving preferential treatment in public education to individuals and groups based on race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin.

The measure passed the Senate on a party line 27-9 vote and goes to the Assembly.

Sen. Ed Hernandez of Covina, who carried the measure, joined other Democrats in arguing that recruitment of minorities has slipped at the University of California and California State University systems under the affirmative action ban.

Republicans blamed the drop-off on poor performance by K-12 schools.

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