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Solicitor General prepares for key Supreme Court cases

Noel Francisco loves everything about his job as solicitor general of the United States, which includes representing the federal government in legal matters before the Supreme Court. He enjoys getting to pick the cases that he personally wants to argue before the court each term. And then there are cases he knows he is expected to argue, such as the three “most consequential” cases he will defend during the upcoming Supreme Court term.

U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco addressed the Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute.

U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco addressed the Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute.

Department of Justice photo

“In October I will be arguing two related cases about whether Title VII covers sexual orientation and gender identity…In November, I will be arguing a case about whether the government can lawfully rescind the DACA program that gives certain status to illegal aliens who came here as very young children,” Francisco said during a question-and-answer session at the ABA Criminal Justice Section Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute on Sept. 5 in Braselton, Ga.

For the record, Francisco is urging the Supreme Court to rule that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which prohibits sex discrimination, does not protect gay people in the workplace. And on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), the solicitor general will argue the Trump administration has the right to end the 2017 program that provided temporary legal status and protection from deportation for nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. when they were children.

“Typically, the solicitor general is going to argue the case that is most consequential to the government, to the administration or just the most important issues,” said Francisco, adding that he prepares for cases by arguing them twice in a moot court setting.  “But I frankly prefer to pick a case that I find interesting but that isn’t necessarily one that is going to be splashed on the front pages of the newspapers.”

The White Collar Crime Institute was held over three days and featured practitioners from around the country covering topics such as e-discovery, international criminal enforcement, health care fraud and sentencing issues.

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