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Rhode Island Wants a Medical Center Like Ours

Lincoln Chafee, the former senator from Rhode Island who is now the (barely a) state's governor, announced today he wants to build a presumably mini-version of the Texas Medical Center.

A "knowledge center" would be developed on land in Providence formerly known as the Jewelry District, combining local universities and hospitals, Chafee's announcement said. He will lead a group to visit TMC next week.

"The visit to Houston is about meeting with leaders in these fields to determine what has worked there and made that area so successful," Chafee said. "Then we can evaluate those lessons and potentially apply them to our broader strategy for growing the economy of Rhode Island and creating jobs."

Here's how the Providence Journal's blog put it:

The team will visit an area called the Texas Medical Center, which is billed as the world's largest medical center with the highest density of clinical facilities, [Chafee spokesman Michael] Trainor said. It's an area Chafee saw under construction when he visited Houston as a U.S. senator, Trainor said.

Well, the Medical Center is always and perpetually under construction, as anyone who tries to maneuver around it knows, so chances are that last statement is very true.

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Let it be said that Chafee has a very un-Rick Perry idea of gubernatorial travel, according to the ProJo report:

Chafee will pay his own travel expenses, and hotel accommodations will be shared, the governor's office said, in an attempt to minimize costs.

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