Hernandez's bill passed the Legislature with little public notice in late August. It won the endorsement of groups including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund and the University of California Student Assn.
On Tuesday, the latter group, made up of student governments, used phone banks at campuses across California to urge Brown to sign the bill. In protest, conservative students at UC Berkeley held a mock bake sale with items labeled and priced by race and gender.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday, October 09, 2011 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 4 News Desk 1 inches; 47 words Type of Material: Correction
Affirmative action: An article in the Sept. 30 Section A about legislation written to again allow consideration of race and gender in California public university admissions misstated the name of an organization opposed to the bill. It is the Pacific Legal Foundation, not the Pacific Legal Center.
The event, and the ensuing counter-protests by supporters of affirmative action, drew international news coverage and thrust SB 185 into the spotlight.
Connerly predicted that Brown would sign the bill because of its support among politicians who represent the growing Latino electorate. "You can't look at this bill without seriously looking at the politics," he said.
Shawn Lewis, president of the Berkeley College Republicans, said he was pleasantly surprised at all the attention the issue has received since his group's bake sale.
"I don't know if Gov. Brown wants this sort of a headache," he said.
Joey Freeman, a UC Berkeley junior from Sherman Oaks and a spokesman for the university's student government, said he hopes the governor signs the bill because it could help diversify his campus.
He acknowledged that the governor is under pressure from both sides.
"It's got to be harder," he said in an interview the day after the protests, "now that this has happened."