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Tuesday, Nov 12th, 2013

Politico Whiteboard: Appeals court judge cautions Congress on patent legislation

9/27/13 2:38 PM EDT

A prominent appeals judge warned today that lawmakers should stay out of further patent reform.

“There’s a more important structural reason why Congress should not be in this business and that is because we have a separation of powers,” said Kathleen O’Malley, a circuit judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

The courts “are doing a lot and no one is giving them credit for it,” she said at an Innovation Alliance patent conference down the street from the Capitol. O’Malley’s comments come amid a flurry of new bills addressing so-called patent trolls and just two years after Congress passed a sweeping overhaul of the patent system.

“We shouldn’t be intruding on Congress’ authority and they shouldn’t be intruding on the authority of the courts," she said. --Jessica Meyers