With the next US presidential election just a year away, news organizations such as NBC News, ABC World News and the Washington Post have armed their reporters with iPhones and set them out on the campaign trail, where they’ve been snapping photos of presidential candidates and sharing them on Instagram. The photos give us a behind-the-scenes look at the debates and town hall meetings held across the country, from New Hampshire to Iowa. They also depict the everyday moments we don’t often see in the press: Mitt Romney typing furiously on his iPad before his flight back to DC; an enormous cow statue ushered through the streets of St. Cloud, MN, outside a Ron Paul event; and a group of Obama supporters in Manatee County, Florida, proudly displaying their Obama 2012 signs in front of an Obama cardboard-cutout.┬áTogether, these photos capture the personality behind US politics and give us a unique look into the 2012 presidential election.

As we get closer to election day in 2012, we look forward to seeing how reporters, volunteers and even candidates themselves use Instagram to give voters an alternative way to stay updated on what’s happening along the campaign trail.

Photos by abcworldnews, ofa_fl, philiprucker, anthonynbcnews, stevenginsberg, alexnbcnews, washingtonpost, kaleweston & laura_carolyn.