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Senate Judiciary Clears Patent Reform Bill

Patrick Leahy is nothing if not determined.

Leahy, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is once again leading the charge on reforming the nation's patent system, an effort he undertook in the three preceding Congresses.

Will this time be any different? The Judiciary Committee on Thursday passed the Patent Reform Act of 2011 by a unanimous vote, sending it onto the Senate floor, where it has died in the past.

But this time, Leahy is backing a compromise measure that has been enough to placate some opposition groups. But others insist that the measure cottons to big business, representing a dangerous erosion of intellectual property rights for small businesses and independent inventors.

Then, too, what could be a landmark patent case between Microsoft and i4i is pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. The uncertainty of the outcome of that case has led the Innovation Alliance to appeal to lawmakers to hold off on their consideration of the Patent Reform Act.

CIO Update reports on the measure the committee reported this morning.

Read the full story at CIO Update:
Patent Reform Bill Heads to Senate Floor