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Lee’s USPTO nomination clears Senate committee

The United States Senate Judiciary Committee has unanimously approved the nomination of Michelle Lee to serve as the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO

Ranking Member Patrick Leahy urged the Senate to quickly confirm the nominee, who has been pending since last year.

“This position has been vacant for more than two years, which is far too long for an office that is so important to our nation’s innovators,” Leahy said. “Ms Lee has strong bipartisan support and I hope her confirmation will be taken up swiftly on the Senate floor.”

This follows the Committee unanimously reporting Daniel Marti’s nomination as Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator to the full Senate on February 12.

Observers urged quick action. For example, Erich Andersen, vice-president and deputy general counsel at Microsoft, said both positions had been open too long.

“Michelle Lee and Daniel Marti each possess years of experience in addressing cutting-edge intellectual property issues, protecting valuable IP assets and promoting a balanced IP system,” Andresen said in a blog post. “They are the strong and qualified leaders their positions demand, and the Senate should act now to confirm them.”

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