Independent groups favoring Mitt Romney already are launching TV advertisements for the general election in competitive states.

And that’s providing political cover against President Barack Obama’s well-financed campaign while Republican Romney works to rebound from a bruising and expensive nomination fight.

Some conservative organizations also are planning expensive get-out-the-vote efforts to benefit Romney in key battlegrounds. And Romney backers are courting wealthy patrons of his former Republican rivals.

Taken together, the developments underscore how dramatically the political landscape has changed since a trio of federal court cases — most notably Citizens United — paved the way for a flood of campaign cash from corporations and tycoons looking to help their favored candidates.

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