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GOP watch: Rudy, T-Paw at GOPAC

At GOPAC, Republicans had a pep in their step. "The conference's two top speakers, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Minnesota GOP Gov. Tim Pawlenty, spoke optimistically of a Republican rebound pegged to an overreach by the President and Democrats in Congress. 'It appears that President Obama is making great progress on climate change, he is changing the political climate in the country back to Republican,' Pawlenty said in his speech to the group. Despite the enthusiasm, some of those charged with leading a Republican comeback recognize that the drop in the president's approval rating and the surge of grassroots energy and anger of display at recent town halls across the country is an opening that the party hasn't yet been able to rush through." 

"As chairman of the House Republican Health Care Solutions Group, Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Springfield, knows a thing or two about health care. But some of what he knows just isn't true," the St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial page writes. "'I'm 59,' Mr. Blunt said last week during a meeting with Post-Dispatch reporters and editors. 'In either Canada or Great Britain, if I broke my hip, I couldn't get it replaced.' We fact-checked that. At least 63 percent of hip replacements performed in Canada last year and two-thirds of those done in England were on patients age 65 or older. More than 1,200 in Canada were done on people older than 85.
 
"'I didn't just pull that number out of thin air,' Mr. Blunt said in a subsequent interview. It came, he said, from testimony before the House Subcommittee on Health by 'some people who are supposed to be experts on Canadian health care.' 'I had been given that example. I was told that 59 is the cutoff,' he said. 'I'm glad you pointed that out to me. I won't use that example any more.' Mr. Blunt is a sincere man. We have no doubt he'll keep his word. But he's not the only Republican leader who has his facts wrong about British and Canadian health care. And some of his colleagues are a bit less contrite."