Solicitor General Noel Francisco Leaving Justice Department

June 17, 2020 by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON – U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco, who represented the Trump administration in a series of high profile Supreme Court cases, is leaving the Justice Department.

Francisco, who officially informed President Trump of his decision Wednesday morning, will step down on July 3.

“With the current Supreme Court term — my third in the job — nearing its end, I have decided it is time for me to return to the private sector and spend more time with my family,” the solicitor general wrote in his resignation letter.

Since his appointment in 2017, Francisco has argued before the Supreme Court 17 times. He’s also represented the United States before the high court through filings in more than 150 other cases.

Among his most significant victories during this time were in Trump v. Hawaii, in which the justices upheld the president’s restrictions on travel from countries that present national-security risks, and Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Comm’n, in which the court concluded Colorado violated the Free Exercise Clause in enforcing its anti-discrimination law against a baker who declined on religious grounds to create a custom cake for a same-sex wedding.

Francisco described representing the U.S. before the Supreme Court as “one of the greatest jobs in the world,” adding that being afforded the chance to do so during Trump’s tenure was “a particular privilege.”

“During that time, we have had significant success in advancing the rule of law — including protecting religious liberty, ensuring vigorous enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws, and safeguarding the executive power that the Constitution confers on the president.

“It has been a great honor to advance these objectives alongside the dedicated men and women at the Department of Justice — some of the finest lawyers I have known,” he said.

In a statement, Attorney General William Barr said Francisco has been “a principled and persuasive advocate on issues ranging from the separation of powers to religious liberty to vigorous enforcement of federal immigration law. 

“His skilled advocacy has been instrumental to historic victories on behalf of the president’s national security authority, the free speech rights of public employees, and property owners’ access to federal courts, among many other significant accomplishments,” Barr continued. “Away from the courtroom, he has been a steady and respected leader for the Office of the Solicitor General, a wise counselor to me and others in the executive branch, and a good friend.”

In overseeing federal litigation, Francisco made strategic use of emergency motions to defend important federal programs against improper nationwide injunctions. To that end, the government obtained relief from the Supreme Court on major immigration initiatives, including the travel proclamation, restrictions on asylum abuses, allocation of funds to build a border wall, and revisions to the definition of a public charge. 

As a result of these successes, some lower courts have begun to curb the erroneous use of nationwide injunctions.

A replacement wasn’t named in the statement.

In The News

Hoyer Says House Will Vote This Month to Remove Bust of 'Dred Scott' Author
Congress
Hoyer Says House Will Vote This Month to Remove Bust of 'Dred Scott' Author
July 2, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters at his weekly pen and pad session that the House will vote later this month to remove the bust of Chief Justice Roger Taney from the U.S. Capitol. Taney wrote the infamous majority opinion in the 1857... Read More

After Narrow Primary Win, McGrath Will Need Progressive Vote To Defeat McConnell
2020 Elections
After Narrow Primary Win, McGrath Will Need Progressive Vote To Defeat McConnell
July 2, 2020
by Gaspard Le Dem

WASHINGTON - Amy McGrath successfully fended off a late surge from progressive challenger Charles Booker last month in Kentucky’s Democratic primary for U.S. Senate.  After a week of painstaking ballot counting, McGrath prevailed against Booker by just 15,000 votes out of more than 544,000 votes cast,... Read More

Supreme Court to Hear Case on Release of Full Mueller Report
Supreme Court
Supreme Court to Hear Case on Release of Full Mueller Report
July 2, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court announced on Thursday that it would decide whether Congress may see currently redacted parts of the report prepared by Special Counsel Robert Mueller during his investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election. As is their custom, the justices did not... Read More

Rep. Lizzie Fletcher Receives Multiple US Chamber Honors for Leadership, Enterprise
Congress
Rep. Lizzie Fletcher Receives Multiple US Chamber Honors for Leadership, Enterprise
July 2, 2020
by Reece Nations

WASHINGTON - Rep. Lizzie Fletcher, D-Texas, received multiple honors from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce last week for her efforts on behalf of small business and her constituents.  Fletcher, who was elected to represent Texas’ 7th Congressional District in 2018, serves on the House Transportation &... Read More

New Online Map Shows U.S. Flood Risk Considerably Higher Than Shown In Federal Data
Natural Disasters
New Online Map Shows U.S. Flood Risk Considerably Higher Than Shown In Federal Data
July 2, 2020
by Gaspard Le Dem

A new virtual map unveiled this week provides a comprehensive and precise look at the risk of flooding across America through a free online tool called Flood Factor. The website, developed by the First Street Foundation, a non-profit research and technology group based in Brooklyn, N.Y.,... Read More

Employers Added Nearly 5 Million Jobs in June, Unemployment Eases
Employment
Employers Added Nearly 5 Million Jobs in June, Unemployment Eases
July 2, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Employers added 4.8 million jobs in June, pushing the nation's unemployment rate down to 11.1%, down from a peak of 14.7% in April, the Labor Department said Thursday. June was the second month in a row of payroll gains after a loss of more... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top