11 billion dollars.
According to the Federal Election Commission thats the amount of money that will be spent on this year's election.
It will be the most expensive election in history but as staggering as the number is, it's nothing new.
American politics and money have gone hand-in-hand forever.
At the turn of the last century, the William McKinley campaign received what was then an INSANE amount of money – $6 million – from railroad and steel barons.
Richard Nixon was given $2.5 million by an insurance magnate when he ran in 1968 and 1972.
And not much has changed since then.
Even with the landmark McCain-Feingold bill passed in 2002 that requires limits in political donations, cash still finds it way into campaign war chests.
And it happens on both sides of the aisle.
In 2004, George Soros gave $23.7 million to liberal causes and much of it ended up fueling John Kerry's campaign.
And, speaking of John Kerry, remember those Swift Boat ads?
Texas financier Bob Perry paid more than $4.5 million for them.
Six years later, we have Super PACs, which accept unlimited donations from corporations, unions and individuals to support candidates.
An overwhelming majority of the money is spent on negative ads.
The presidential candidates claim to hate them.
But do they really?
The man at the center of it all is Jim Bopp.
He's the one who first brought the now infamous Citizens United case before the Supreme Court, which, along with other lower court decisions, laid the groundwork for Super PACs.
Bopp is now a Romney supporter who thinks contributors should be able to give money directly to the candidates:
"Candidates are severely limited in what they can accept. I agree with Governor Romney. Why not give money to the candidate – the candidate is the one accountable to the American people – rather than give it to a Super PAC or some other entities like that? That would be preferable."