Sunday, April 20, 2008

Patent Reform on Wobbly Legs in Senate

On Friday, the Wall Street Journal ran an article claiming that S. 1145 has hit an "impasse" at the Senate, and quoted Pennsylvania's Sen. Arlen Specter as saying "I think we need more time to get it right." More telling however, was a quote from Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy, who spoke of the bill in past tense, saying that the bill "was a missed opportunity," adding that the dispute over S. 1145 was over "just a handful of words" and further warning that "thousands of hours" spent on negotiations were at risk of being wasted.

Also, it was reported by Hal Wegner that after last Wednesday's Giles Sutherland Rich American In of Court meeting, John Whealan announced to several members that he would be leaving his temporary position with Senator Leahy on May 1, 2008. Whealan has been the Deputy General Counsel for Intellectual Property Law and Solicitor for the USPTO since 2001. Over the last year, he has been on leave to assist Leahy with S. 1145. Some are questioning if Whealan's move is indicative of a dying bill that has, so far, failed to generate the level of support hoped by its proponents . . .

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