From the Alliance

Dec. 19, 2013

ICYMI: Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee Express Concerns Over “Unintended Consequences” of Patent Legislation; Urge Thoughtful, Deliberative, Inclusive Debate

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
“I am wary of overkill. I am wary of unintended consequences. We have a very important obligation here to make sure that we do no harm.” – Reuters (12/17/13)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) 
To Chairman Patrick Leahy (I-VT) on the patents issue: “This is such a difficult, complicated arena. Please have another hearing.” – The Hill (12/17/13)

Some Senators want to slow down what they see as a speeding train as well — and more than one evoked growing opposition from the university community. “This is such a difficult, complicated arena,” said Feinstein. “Universities want an opportunity to come to the table.” – Ars Technica(12/17/13)

Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) 
“If we could dedicate six years to getting the [2011 America Invents Act] right … I think we can dedicate a few more months.” – The Hill (12/17/13)

“We [must] both meet the very real concerns and threat facing completely innocent end-users and small businesses, without causing needless harm to what is a very vital and I think somewhat fragile ecosystem that is vital to our economy.” – PoliticoPro (12/17/13)

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) 
“If the goal is to create a chilling effect on trolls that are abusing the system, it seems to me this goes too far by reaching into meritorious claims.” – Law360 (12/17/13)

Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, the Senate’s second-ranking Democrat, said he has serious concerns about the House’s “loser pays” provision, saying it flips the current litigation system on its head and may harm small businesses. “You need pretty deep pockets to live under this new fee-shifting system” that the House bill would create. – CQ Roll Call (12/17/13)

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
“This issue is very complicated, complex so I want to be sure to understand the impact and potential consequences of changes to the patent law. I want to understand what the impacts might be. I certainly want to hear from the perspective of, for example, small universities that engage in this kind of research. I’d like to hear from the entrepreneur, the small inventors before we go forward in a big way.” – Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing (12/17/13)

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
A bill should be crafted to protect “the innocent garage inventor who is at the heart of all of your concerns.” – Ars Technica (12/17/13)