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Indiana Republican Senate candidate Richard Mourdock gestures during a news in Indianapolis, Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2012, to explain the comment he made during last night Senate debate. Mourdock said that when a woman becomes pregnant during a rape, "that's something God intended." Mourdock has been locked in a close contest with Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly.

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GOP candidates in close races disavow rape remark

Just as Mitt Romney and other Republicans had cut into the Democrats' advantage with female voters, a tea party-backed Senate candidate's awkward remark — that if rape leads to pregnancy it's "something God intended" — has propelled the emotional issue of abortion back to the political forefront. It's put GOP candidates in tight races, from the presidential candidate on down, on the defensive.

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