WASHINGTON (AP) — Having watched several campaigns collapse in 2012 after candidates made mistakes, Republicans are now providing tougher training for candidates on how to avoid disaster.
Some GOP contenders, especially inexperienced ones, are being invited to sessions in Washington designed to help them navigate sensitive issues, such as those involving women, and to avoid rhetorical traps.
Two GOP Senate candidates in 2012, Todd Akin in Missouri and Richard Mourdock in Indiana, lost their races after making controversial comments while attempting to explain their anti-abortion views.
GOP leaders say the intensified training became necessary after Democrats began accusing the GOP of conducting a "war against women."
Democrats, who also provide training to candidates, say the Republicans' contenders' problems stem from their views, not their rhetoric.