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At GOP debate, Santorum claims Africa is a ‘country’

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Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum became the latest Republican presidential candidate to misspeak about Africa Tuesday.

During CNN’s debate on foreign policy, Santorum said that “Africa was a country,” instead of a continent.

Former Bush Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, who now serves as a scholar for the American Enterprise Institute, asked the candidates how their policies would promote growth in poor countries.

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“Well, as the author of The Global Fund bill and the Millennium Challenge in the United States Senate, and as someone who worked with the president on [the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief] PEPFAR to deal with the issue of AIDS in Africa, I believe it’s absolutely essential,” Santorum replied.

“Africa was a country on the brink of complete meltdown and chaos.”

But Santorum is in good company.

At a CNN debate in Las Vegas earlier this year, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann seemed not to know that Libya was in Africa.

“Now with the president, he put us in Libya,” Bachmann declared. “He is now putting us in Africa. We already were stretched too thin, and he put our special operations forces in Africa.”

After the 2008 presidential election campaign, aides revealed to Fox News reporter Carl Cameron that Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin was also unaware that Africa was a continent.

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She “didn’t understand that Africa was a continent, rather than a series, a country just in itself,” Cameron explained.

Watch this video from CNN, broadcast Sept. 21, 2011.

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(H/T: Think Progress)

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