IPwatch has an interesting article on patent reform in the United States (good luck to reach something useful with a patent reform for the IT industry) which mentions a patent attorney at Microsoft:
In a panel on lobbying and legislation, Damich, Band, and David W. Jones, former counsel for the Senate subcommittee on intellectual property and now with Microsoft, struggled in discussing a process whose outcome seldom satisfies anyone. Still, Band wondered why, when patent litigation can cost a company an average of $6 million a year, corporations do not spend more time - and less money than the cost of litigation - on lobbying. He noted how the 1998 Sony Bono Copyright Term Extension Act had brought millions of dollars for the Disney Company and other copyright holders by extending their copyrights for 20 years and did it without litigation. Band suggested that IP holders are reluctant to get too involved with Congress for fear of what it might do.
Microsoft suggests that companies should lobby Congress in order to reduce their patent litigation bills.