Election donors already looking ahead to next campaigns

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It has been two weeks since the election, and the big number we're going to focus on is: $6 billion. That's how much money was spent on the 2012 campaign... And a lot of that money came from big donors.

So what do those donors have planned now that the election is over?

Well, plenty of people have already opened their calendars, and flipped to November, 2014, and November, 2016. "We are now essentially in one big election cycle," says Adam Lioz, a campaign finance expert with a think-tank called Demos.

Big donors will keep cutting checks, and according to Lioz, they see donations to politicians and super PACs as investments. "You know, elections are a means to an end, right? Elections are the most-prominent way in which we seek to influence public policy."

But he is also quick to note that in between those elections, there are other ways to influence public policy. Between now and the next election, donors will focus on specific issues like Medicare and the federal deficit.

Spending money on those issues give donors all kinds of influence.