Political Ads: The Cost of Campaigning
Now that the election is over, so is something else: seeing and hearing political ads. 2012 was the second most-expensive presidential race in history. Video by fox47news.comvideo
No matter who you voted for -- face it -- there is something missing in your life right now: campaign commercials. They're gone, to the relief of most of you -- unless you work in TV ad sales.
It takes billions to become the leader of the free world. According to estimates from the Center for Responsive Politics, or CRP, 2012 was the second most expensive presidential race in U.S. history, behind 2008.
"The reason is that there weren't primary fights in both parties. There was only a Republican primary fight, and no one was running against Barack Obama, so a little less money this time around," says Viveca Novak of the CRP.
Still, some eye-popping numbers, even as the final spending totals are being tabulated.
CRP breaks it down this way: President Obama and the DNC spent more than $930 million. Governor Romney and the RNC spent more than $1.02 billion.
Outside organizations spent around $528 million.
What the parties and the taxpayers spent on the conventions: $142 million.
Those numbers don't exactly surprise campaign veterans on both sides.
"It is a little bit of an arms race. One side raises more, the other side has to match," says Democratic strategist Simon Rosenberg.
"It takes lot of money to put into these campaigns. It takes a lot of money to get on television in a lot of these major media markets throughout country," says Paul Lindsay of the National Republican Congressional Committee.
And that is where most of the money goes, Rosenberg and Lindsay say, to those political ads - especially in battleground states.
"Especially when you've got House, Senate, presidential campaigns, gubernatorial campaigns in all of these markets, the markets are more competitive, the rates are higher and it's going to cost more money to get your message out to voters," says Lindsay.
"I mean, 70, 80 percent traditionally of a campaign goes into paid communications, television, radio, the internet, newspapers," says Rosenberg.
But Rosenberg also points out that, while there is a lot of money going out, it is also easier than ever to get money coming in. More and more donors can get involved via text, Facebook, and other new media.