Campaign costs show staggering numbers

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) — The 2012 Election saw an unprecedented dollar amount of campaign contributions.

From the presidential race to our local congressional races, campaigns spent more money than ever before.

But, it looks like this year is only the tip of the iceberg.

Here’s a staggering number: $6 billion

That's roughly the amount of money campaigns and candidates spent on the 2012 Election cycle.

But if you think that's standard for previous elections, it's not.

In fact, the 2012 Election has set the new standard for how much money will be spent on campaigning.

These more than impressive dollar amounts are allowed, thanks to a recent Supreme Court ruling.

"This has gotten a lot of attention, based off of super PACs, and the decision by the Supreme Court case and the free speech rights that corporation and multi millionaires and billionaires have," said Matthew Berbower PH. D from Indiana State University

To put the entire situation in perspective for you, we focus in on one of Indiana's hotly contested elections.

The Senate race between Republican Richard Mourdock and Democrat Joe Donnelly.

Combined amounts of the two add up to over $25 million on the race

That's five times what was spent in 2010, in The Dan Coats, Brad Ellsworth race.

If you break that down to the number of Hoosiers who actually voted on Tuesday, it's $10 per vote.

Take it one step further and see how much a vote cost each candidate.

Democrat Joe Donnelly spent around $11.5 million and got over 1.2 million votes, which means his campaign, and supporters, spent about $9 per vote.

Whereas, his opponent, Richard Mourdock, spent $13.6 million to get over 1.1 million voters.

For Mourdock, his loss to Donnelly was steeper, because he spent $12 per vote.

But as Dr. Bergbower stated previous, this election could be just the tip of iceberg.

"The numbers go up. I expect them to go up again in 2016. It's a prize both parties want to win and millionaires and billionaires want to be on board with the winner," Bergbower said.

An interesting parting note: between President Barack Obama and his challenger Mitt Romney, the two campaigns spent over $1.6 billion.

Copyright 2014 WISH TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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