Now Former President Bush Gets Credit for Saving Over a Million Lives

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Published April 07, 2009

| FoxNews.com

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Life Saver

It is a story you probably won't hear about in too many other places. A program launched by former President George W. Bush has saved more than a million lives.

A study by two Stanford University doctors states that Mr. Bush's AIDS-fighting campaign reduced deaths by 10 percent in targeted African nations, saving roughly 1.2 million people.

The study tracked AIDS deaths and HIV infections in 12 African nations getting aid under the president's emergency plans for AIDS relief. The $15 billion, five-year effort was launched in 2003.

Last year Congress extended it for another five years. Former White House Press Secretary Dana Perino who just returned from volunteering in Africa says: "Good news stories are not always reported because there is always bad news that drives coverage. But Americans should be proud and President Bush deserves a lot of credit."

Leap of Faith?

President Obama has named to his faith-based advisory panel — a gay rights activist who has sharply criticized Pope Benedict and other Catholic leaders.

Harry Knox is the director of religion and faith at the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign. Last month he lashed out at the pope and Catholic bishops for their opposition to gay marriage, calling them "discredited leaders."

He told the Bay Area Reporter newspaper that for following the pope's message, the Catholic organization Knights of Columbus are "foot soldiers of a discredited army of oppression."

Knox also criticized the pope for his stance on contraception.

Speaking His Mind

And Alabama Republican Congressman Mike Rogers is not afraid of expressing himself when the topic is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The Montgomery Advertiser newspaper's blog reports that during a visit to Auburn University Rogers called Speaker Pelosi "crazy," "mean as a snake," and "Tom Delay in a skirt" — referring to the highly-partisan former Republican House majority leader.

Rogers said there is little commitment to bipartisanship by Democrats and that, "they don't talk to us. They've got the vote, and they can do what they want."

He said Democrats are paying back Republicans for how they were treated when the GOP controlled Congress. Speaker Pelosi's office had no comment.

— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy contributed to this report.

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