Dear Members of the House Republican Study Committee:
Like you, Americans for Prosperity strongly supports policies that advance free markets and economic liberty, two values that rest upon a foundation of property rights.
Intellectual property protects creations of the mind, whether a new invention, literary work, or life-saving medicine. These innovations rightly enjoy protections that offer their creators the hope of realizing a return on the resources they invest to bring a new innovation or creative work to market.
Our Founding Fathers were keenly aware of the importance of intellectual property – so much so that they mentioned it in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution: “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries…”
Throughout our nation’s history, intellectual property has proven to be an engine of economic growth, jobs, and human progress. Today, over 40 million jobs in the United States are directly attributable to intellectual property-intensive industries.
Unfortunately, intellectual property theft at home and abroad is a growing problem for America’s innovators, creators, and consumers. Counterfeit goods of every kind – from fake medicines, to airbags, to children’s toys, and makeup – continue to flood our markets, harming legitimate businesses and putting unsuspecting consumers at risk. Moreover, organized criminal networks continue to peddle fake products and steal creative content in the online space.
Given the importance of intellectual property rights to the broader economy, and to the innovators who develop that property, we believe that reasonable enforcement of IP protections should remain a priority for policymakers.
Brent Wm. Gardner
Director of Federal Affairs
Americans for Prosperity