Feb 7 2019

Subcommittee will focus on promoting American innovation and economic development 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Chris Coons (D-DE) were announced as Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property.

Jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property includes the United State Patent and Trademark Office, the United States Copyright Office, oversight of the functions of the federal government as they relate to intellectual property, patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets.

“Intellectual property plays an important role in our nation’s long term economic success and national security. In recent years our country has been faced with a number of challenges in our intellectual property system, from rampant theft from state actors like China, to confusion among innovators and inventors about what is even patentable. These issues are causing our nation’s economy to lose billions of dollars annually and threaten our country’s long-term technological dominance,” said Senator Tillis. “I want to thank Chairman Graham and Ranking Member Feinstein for allowing Senator Coons and I to focus on these issues at the subcommittee level for the first time in years. I’m committed to working with Ranking Member Coons on a bipartisan basis to examine the current state of intellectual property in the United States and make targeted improvements to our intellectual property framework that protect and promote America’s innovation economy.”

“The United States is the most innovative country on the planet. To stay at the top, inventors must be supported by strong intellectual property laws that encourage and reward research and development and that penalize and deter IP theft,” said Senator Coons. “The founders understood this, and that’s why they specifically empowered Congress in the Constitution to create a nationwide patent system to – as they put it – ‘promote the progress.’ The United States needs to better protect innovation – the lifeblood of our economy – and this subcommittee will provide an important forum for addressing these critical policy issues. I look forward to working with Chairman Tillis to improve and clarify U.S. patent law, celebrate inventions that improve Americans’ lives, and promote global protection of IP.”

Other members on the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property are Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John Cornyn (R-TX), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Mike Lee (R-UT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).