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Gaffe-Prone Candidates Hurt GOP’s Senate Chances

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WASHINGTON (AP) - Republicans hopeful of taking over the Senate should be measuring the drapes. But a series of blown opportunities two years ago and again this year has cost Republicans dearly in their quest for a Senate majority.

Flawed, gaffe-prone nominees may have cost them the chance to win three seats in the 2010 GOP wave. Now, an easy pickup in Missouri and a longtime GOP seat in Indiana are in question after high-profile stumbles.

Republicans started 2012 with high hopes of taking over the Senate. They had just 10 seats at risk this year compared with 23 for Democrats _ including the two independents who caucus with Democrats.

Then came the bizarre missteps. Not one but two GOP candidates made widely panned remarks about rape, pregnancy and abortion.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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