04.03.14

SJC Approves Judicial Nominees, Continues Work On Patent Legislation

Committee To Meet On Tuesday To Consider Legislation To Combat Patent Abuse

WASHINGTON (Thursday, April 3, 2014) – The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved four judicial nominees and the nominee to lead the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and continued its discussion of legislation authored by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to rein in abuses in the patent system.

Cheryl Krause, nominated to fill a judicial vacancy on the 3rd Circuit, was approved unanimously. The Committee also approved three district court nominees during Thursday’s executive business meeting as well as the nomination of Leon Rodriguez to be the director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at the Department of Homeland Security. The U.S. Attorney nominee for New Mexico was also approved.

The Committee also continued its discussion of legislation to combat patent trolls. Leahy has been working on this issue since last year, and chaired a hearing in December to highlight the need for reform. His legislation with Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah), the Patent Transparency and Improvements Act of 2013, is currently listed on the Committee’s agenda and he is working with Members from both parties to incorporate their ideas into a manager’s package. Leahy announced the Committee would meet again on Tuesday to mark up legislation.

“I hope we are in the final stages of hammering out a Manager’s amendment that is the result of true compromise between all sides,” Leahy said.  “Stakeholders come to us with concerns from their particular experience.  As lawmakers, it is our responsibility to listen to those concerns and pass laws that work for the entire community.”

An outline of the Patent Transparency and Improvements Act of 2013 can be found here, and text of the legislation can be found online.

Results and a webcast of Thursday’s executive business meeting can be found online

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