THE DAILY WHIP: THURSDAY, JUNE 23, 2011

For Immediate Release:

June 23, 2011

Contact:

Katie GrantDaniel Reilly, 202-225-3130

House Meets At: First Vote Predicted: Last Vote Predicted:
10:00 a.m.: Morning Hour
12:00 p.m.: Legislative Business

Fifteen “One Minutes” per side

12:30 – 1:30 p.m. 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.
H.Res. 320 - Rule providing for consideration of H.R. 2219 – Department of Defense Appropriations Act (Rep. Young (FL) – Appropriations) (One hour of debate). The Rules committee has recommended an open Rule which allows any amendments that comply with House Rules to be considered. It provides that the bill will be read by paragraph under the Rules of the House. It allows any Member to submit an amendment under the 5 minute Rule, but allows the Chair to give priority in recognition to those amendments pre-printed in the Congressional Record. It also allows pro forma amendments. The Rule provides one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking member of the committee on Appropriations and allows one motion to recommit, with or without instructions.
 
The Rule also establishes a standing order of the House for the rest of the 112th Congress, which prohibits consideration of an amendment to a general appropriation bill proposing both a decrease in an appropriation designated as emergency costs of the Global War on Terror and an increase in an appropriation not so designated, or vice versa. This is another impediment to Members being able to offer amendments and goes against the ‘open process’ which Republicans promised.
 
Continue consideration of H.R. 1249 – America Invents Act (Rep. Smith (TX) – Judiciary/Budget) H.R. 1249 makes significant changes to the Patent system. Among some of the larger changes included in this overhaul, the bill includes a change that would give priority to the first-to-file for a patent, instead of the first-to-invent. It also creates a new method for challenging previously issued business method patents, and limits the venue in which suits could be filed for patent infringement, including providing primary jurisdiction to federal courts. The bill also requires the Director to submit an annual spending plan as well as an annual year-end report to the House and Senate Appropriations and Judiciary Committees.
 
H.R. 1249 also seeks to make changes in the area of fees. It allows the USPTO to set or adjust all of its fees, including those related to patents and trademarks, instead of having Congress set fees. Before the manager’s amendment was filed, the bill originally allowed the agency to keep all of the funds it raised through these fees. The Smith (TX) Manager’s amendment would change the underlying bill reverting the patent office funding back through the appropriations process.
 
The Rule makes in order 15 amendments, each debatable for 10 minutes. As of last night, all time for general debate had been exhausted. Of the amendments, only the Manager’s amendment had been debated and it has a recorded vote pending:
 
Smith (TX) Manager’s Amendment. The amendment makes technical changes to the legislation. It also changes the USPTO fee structure in the underlying bill. Specifically, the Manager’s amendment would provide that the fees collected by the USPTO would be set aside in a reserve fund, but would not be available to be expended until appropriated by Congress.
 
There are 14 amendments left to be debated. The full list of amendments made in order under the Rule is as follows:
 
Conyers/Rohrabacher Amendment. Relating to the first-to-file system
Baldwin/Sensenbrenner Amendment. Relating to striking section 5
Moore (WI) Amendment. Relating to the diversity of patent applicants
Jackson Lee Amendment. Relating to the rights of small businesses
Lujan Amendment. Relating to the satellite office location selection process
Peters/Renacci Amendment. Relating to a study on how to help small businesses obtain and enforce foreign patents
Polis Amendment. Relating to new versus existing patents
Conyers/Markey/Neal/Pompeo/Garrett Amendment. Relating to the 60-day period for application of patent term extension
Speier Amendment. Relating to proof of claim of derivation
Waters Amendment. Relating to a severability clause
Sensenbrenner Amendment. Relating to striking section 3
Manzullo Amendment. Relating to Congress’ ability to set fees for the USPTO
Rohrabacher/Kaptur Amendment. Relating to post-grant reviews on small businesses
Schock/Boren/Waters/Sensenbrenner/Franks (AZ)/Kaptur Amendment. Relating to business method patents
 
Bill Text for H.R. 1249:
HTML Version
PDF Version    
Background for H.R. 1249:
CRS Report – Patent Reform Issues in the 112th Congress: Innovation Issues
 
Begin Consideration of H.R. 2219 – Department of Defense Appropriations Act (Rep. Young (FL) – Appropriations) H.R. 2219 appropriates approximately $530 billion for non-emergency military functions of the Department of Defense for fiscal year 2012, which is approximately $9 billion below the President’s request.  It also includes $119 billion in emergency spending for defense activities related to the wars.
The House is expected to begin general debate on H.R. 2219 . The House will not consider any amendments today. It is expected that all amendments will be considered when the House reconvenes on July 6th, after the 7th Recess of the year.
 
Bill Text for H.R. 2219:
HTML Version
PDF Version    
Background for H.R. 2219:
CRS report - Defense: FY2012 Budget Request, Authorization and Appropriations 
 
TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK
The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Friday, June 24: The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. The House is expected to complete consideration of H.R. 1249 – America Invents Act (Rep. Smith (TX) - Judiciary), if it is not completed today. The House is also expected to consider legislation relating to Libya. Links to legislation can be found here. Also, the House is expected to consider H.R. 2279 – FAA airport and airway extension Act (Rep. Mica – Transportation and Infrastructure).
 
The Daily Quote
“House Majority Leader Eric Cantor pushed back hard Tuesday against Senate Republican suggestions of a scaled-back, short-term debt deal, saying it’s ‘crunch time’ in White House budget talks and ‘if we can’t make the tough decisions now, why … would [we] be making those tough decisions later….’It shows a real tactical split between the Senate and House GOP, which has much more to fear from multiple debt ceiling votes between now and the 2012 elections. But it’s also true that pressures from the right and tea party forces have left House Republicans far more divided over domestic spending issues than Cantor or Boehner readily admit. These divisions have been on sharp display in recent floor votes on amendments to spending bills for the new fiscal year beginning Oct. 1.”
 
-     Politico, 6/22/11