February 04, 2004
Courts spike Bacardi trademark claim

I just love to see Tom DeLay lose, even if it's only by proxy.

In a blow to one of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay’s (R-Texas) top legislative goals, a federal trademark court has dismissed rum giant Bacardi’s claim that it has the rights to the coveted “Havana Club” label.

The ruling also rejected claims brought by a Bacardi competitor, Havana Club Holdings SA (HCH), that Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) and former Rep. James Rogan (R-Calif.) engaged in improper lobbying activities to help Bacardi in its legal battle.

Late last week, an appeals board at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) reached a decision more than eight years after Bacardi first filed its complaints against HCH. Bacardi claimed that HCH secured the patent rights under fraudulent circumstances and that it has the rights to the label.

But the PTO dismissed that argument and in turn hampered DeLay’s effort to help Bacardi secure the label through legislative language he is pushing on Capitol Hill.

Now, if you read down through this thing, you see that not only are there bipartisan bills in both chambers which would provide an alternate approach to DeLay's - the Senate bill is cosponsored by that flaming socialist Larry Craig of Idaho - you also see that Big Business is squarely behind that effort and opposed to DeLay. Yet still he persists, and because he's the biggest baddest mofo on the block, he may yet win anyway. There's a lesson in here about working together to defeat a bully, but I'm not sure it's one that would comfortably fit into an After School Special narrative.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 04, 2004 to Scandalized! | TrackBack