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WASHINGTON � James C. Ho, of counsel in the Dallas office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, will become the new Texas Solicitor General when current Solicitor General R. Ted Cruz returns to private practice later this spring. As the state’s chief appellate lawyer, Ho will oversee both criminal and civil litigation before state and federal appeals courts and will represent Texas before the U.S. Supreme Court. As a senior member of the executive staff, Ho will also serve as a top legal advisor to the Attorney General. “As a former U.S. Supreme Court clerk and one of the nation’s most promising lawyers, Jim Ho is uniquely qualified to serve as the new solicitor general,” Attorney General Gregg Abbott said. “The State of Texas is fortunate that a lawyer with Jim Ho’s experience and demonstrated legal talent is willing to leave private practice to continue his remarkable record of public service.” Like his predecessor, Cruz, Ho is a former U.S. Department of Justice attorney and Supreme Court clerk (clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas during the 2005 Term). Prior to his clerkship, Ho served as chief counsel to U.S. Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas. As the top legal advisor to Cornyn, Ho helped craft the OPEN Government Act, the first major federal Freedom of Information Act reform package in over a decade. In 2006, Senators Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison recognized Ho’s considerable legal ability when they appointed him to their Federal Judicial Evaluation Committee, which helps the senators evaluate potential federal judicial and U.S. attorney nominees from Texas. Before joining Cornyn’s staff, Ho worked at the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, and later in the Office of Legal Counsel. He graduated from the University of Chicago School of Law with high honors in 1999. At Gibson Dunn, Ho practiced in the firm’s national appellate and constitutional law practice group. Cruz has served as Texas solicitor general for nearly five a half years. When Cruz leaves state service later this spring, he will have argued before the United States Supreme Court eight times � more than any other lawyer in Texas � in cases involving such issues as the Pledge of Allegiance, the Ten Commandments, the death penalty and civil commitment of violent sexual predators. [See related article, " Justices listen to a key voice."]

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