The 2012 presidential election is the first in which outside groups empowered by the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizen's United decision will play a major role. In terms of advertising spending, the largest players could rival traditional candidate and party committees, especially in the dozen most-competitive states. Use this interactive display to see how much money the top groups have spent since May 1 in each battleground state, and to view their latest advertisments.
Ohio (hover over chart for detail)
(in any state)
President Obama's official campaign committee. It is required to file monthly disclosure reports with the Federal Election Commission.
Mitt Romney's official campaign committee. It is required to file monthly disclosure reports with the FEC.
The DNC organizes the presidential nominating convention and promotes the party's platform and its candidates. It is required to file monthly disclosure reports with the FEC.
The RNC is the Republican counterpart to the DNC, and must file monthly disclosure reports with the FEC.
Founded by former RNC Chairman Mike Duncan and former deputy White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove. The group is a 501(c)(4), and is not required to disclose its donors.
Founded by former RNC Chairman Mike Duncan and former deputy White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove. The group is the super PAC wing of the Crossroads family.
Headed by former Obama aides Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney, the super PAC is the Democratic answer to Crossroads. Because it is a super PAC, the group must file monthly reports with the FEC.
Run by Carl Forti, Romney's political director during the 2008 campaign, it was the largest super PAC backing Romney during the 2012 primaries. It must file monthly reports with the FEC.
The Iowa-based 501(c)(4) was founded in 2007 by Nick Ryan, a former top aide to then-Rep. Jim Nussle. The group has ties to current and former Romney advisers. It is not required to disclose its donors.
AFP has close ties to billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch and is run by conservative activist Tim Phillips. The group claims nearly 2 million members affiliated with some 35 state chapters.
The abortion-rights group has endorsed President Obama, marking just the third time it has formally backed a candidate. It launched its first advertisements in three swing states in May.
Founded in San Diego in 1979, the group is a major player in social conservative politics. It began advertising against President Obama’s health care law in six swing states in June.
The group is largely funded by Joe Ricketts, the conservative billionaire who founded TD Ameritrade, the investment firm based in Omaha, Nebraska.