Here is a report on recent news and commentary related to the Federal Circuit and its cases. Today’s report highlights:
- two articles discussing the Supreme Court’s grant of certiorari in Vidal v. Elster, a trademark case decided by the Federal Circuit; and
- an article and a blog post providing updates on the ongoing investigation into Judge Newman’s fitness to serve as a judge.
Jimmy Hoover authored an article for Law.com highlighting the Supreme Court’s grant of certiorari in Vidal v. Elster, a trademark case regarding a “suggestive trademark about former President Donald Trump.” He notes how, in this case, “the high court will consider whether the Lanham Act’s prohibition against using an individual’s name without consent in a registered trademark is unconstitutional in the case of a government official or public figure.” He highlights how the Solicitor General argued “registering marks critical of public officials would actually chill speech because the government-provided benefit of trademark protection would prevent others from using the mark.”
Greg Stohr authored an article for Bloomberg Law also regarding Vidal v. Elster. In this article, he explains how “[a]t issue is a decades-old provision in federal trademark law barring registration of marks that identify a living person without that individual’s consent.” He discusses how the “case puts President Joe Biden’s administration in the unusual position of arguing against an effort to mock his potential reelection opponent, former President Donald Trump.”
Ryan Davis wrote an article for Law360 providing an update on the narrowing scope of the ongoing investigation into Judge Newman’s fitness to serve as a judge. He highlights how the Federal Circuit’s Judicial Council “declined on Monday to let Judge Pauline Newman continue hearing cases amid a probe of concerns about her mental fitness, while the investigators decided to focus on whether her responses to their orders constitute misconduct.” Specifically, he notes how the focus of the ongoing investigation has narrowed “to whether [Judge Newman] has committed misconduct by not complying with their orders, including the one demanding that she undergo medical tests.”
Eileen McDermott wrote a blog post for IPWatchdog also providing an update on the current state of the ongoing investigation into Judge Newman’s fitness to serve as a judge. She discusses the text of a June 5th order mentioning how the Judicial Council’s concerns “have increased.” She further highlights how the order notes that, “[s]ince the Council’s March action, Judge Newman has issued only two of her majority opinions,” and how “[s]he still has a backlog of seven opinions, three of which have been pending for over 200 days and all of which have been pending for over 100 days.”