The election of 2012 is marked by the influence of the super PACs, super political-action committees. Their purpose is to raise money from corporations and individuals to support or oppose candidates.
In 2010, the Supreme Court ruled that the government could not limit the spending of corporations and other groups that want to support a political campaign; it was against their First Amendment rights. Super PACs are not allowed to use their money to contribute to candidates or parties; however; the money is spent for advertising and in other ways of communicating with the public. The super PACs have received a lot of criticism because the majority of all ads are negative and used to oppose other candidates.