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Rohrabacher Speaks Out Against Phony Patent ‘Reform’

Nov 15, 2013

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher has declared his vigorous opposition to efforts being proposed in the House Judiciary Committee that would disadvantage America’s small inventors. “In and of itself,” the congressman said Thursday in a speech before the House of Representatives, “this legislation is too broad, its implications too unclear, and its effects unknowable.”

The “Innovation Act,” H.R. 3309, said Rep. Rohrabacher, “disadvantages the little guy against deep-pocket multi-national corporations, in the guise of targeting so-called ‘patent trolls.’” The term refers to purchasers of patents who then search for potential infringements and defend their intellectual property rights.

“Proponents of this legislation,” continued the congressman, who represents coastal Orange County, CA, “are covering the fact they have stolen someone else’s patent rights, and now want to change the system so they can get away with it. A recent study mandated by Congress showed that this much heralded ‘problem’ isn’t a major driver of lawsuits and has not caused a surge of new lawsuits.”

The legislative effort to correct this so-called problem contended the congressman, actually creates more hurdles for small inventors and – contrary to the bill’s identifier – frustrates further innovation in a U.S. economy that desperately needs to recover its dynamism.

“Most of the provisions in the legislation they will pass through committee,” said Rep. Rohrabacher, “will make it much more complicated, costly, and challenging to bring a lawsuit for patent infringement, rather than making it simpler, cheaper, and easier to defend against baseless accusations of infringement.

“In addition, under the claim of ‘technical correction,’ this legislation proposes the removal of the patent system’s only independent judicial review process, Section 145 of Title 35. If this passes, inventors who are not satisfied with the patent office administrative processes will have no recourse. This safeguard of independent judicial review has been American law since 1836, and last year the Supreme Court … reaffirmed the importance of t his provision.

“Now the Patent Office has requested that judicial review be done away with because it is burdensome to them to defend their actions in court. The Patent Office wants to strip away the rights of Americans because it is inconvenient for their bureaucracy.

“The legislation going before the Judiciary Committee here in the House on Wednesday, Nov. 20, is consistent with the decades-long war being waged on America’s independent inventors.”