This year was a great year for political photography. An intense battle for the White House gave us thousands of photos. From the "wizard Obama" photo to the controversial photo of Mitt Romney and a young schoolgirl, here are 41 of our favorites:

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  • May 11

    President Barack Obama greets a baby in the crowd at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport in Reno, Nev., Friday, May 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Cathleen Allison)

  • May 15

    President Barack Obama jokingly plays with the soccer ball, as he accepts a Los Angeles Galaxy soccer jersey from Landon Donovan, right, during a ceremony honoring the 2011 Major League Soccer champion Galaxy, Tuesday, May 15, 2012, at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • May 17

    Vice President Joe Biden visits at Hog father's Old Fashioned BBQ, Thursday, May 17, 2012, in Washington, Pa. (AP Photo/Julia Rendleman, pool)

  • May 23

    Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton winks at a committee member as she testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, May 23, 2012, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Law of the Sea Convention. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

  • May 23

    President Barack Obama speaks to supporters during a campaign fundraiser in Denver, Wednesday, May 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)

  • May 29

    LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 29: Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney walks off of his campaign plane past Donald Trump's plane after landing at McCarran International Airport on May 29, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Mitt Romney will campaign and hold fundraisers Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

  • June 1

    President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush arrive in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 31, 2012, for a ceremony to unveil Bush's portrait. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • June 4

    President Barack Obama greets people as he arrives to speak at Honeywell, Friday, June 1, 2012, in Golden Valley , Minn. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • June 4

    Vice President Joe Biden, left, gestures as he delivers the commencement address to Cypress Bay High School graduates, Monday, June 4, 2012 in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

  • June 11

    President Barack Obama talks with Betty White in the Oval Office, June 11, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

  • June 26

    President Barack Obama picks up a boy as he visits The Varsity restaurant, Tuesday, June 26, 2012, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • July 2

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and wife Ann Romney ride a jet ski on Lake Winnipesaukee in Wolfeboro, N.H., Monday, July 2, 2012, where Romney has a vacation home. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

  • July 8

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, right, helps Samira Hamidi, an Afghan citizen, with a microphone during the Afghan Civil Society event at the Okura Hotel Center in Tokyo, Sunday, July 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Brendan Smialowski, Pool)

  • July 10

    President Barack Obama greets the crowd after speaking on middle class tax relief at a campaign event at the Kirkwood Community College Recreation Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Tuesday, July 10, 2012. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

  • July 10

    First lady Michelle Obama participates in a game during a children's fitness class at the Blanchard Park YMCA, Tuesday, July 10, 2012, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • July 24

    First lady Michelle Obama dials the phone number while Obama campaign volunteer Kathleen Walsh watches after Obama made a surprise visit to the field office during a campaign stop on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 in Dayton, Ohio. The first lady made four phone calls and spoke to one person while leaving three voice messages for the others.(AP Photo/Skip Peterson)

  • Aug. 6

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney pushes a shopping cart after buying groceries at Hunter's Shop and Save supermarket in Wolfeboro, N.H., Monday, Aug. 6, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

  • Aug. 8

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney walks with Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey, right, and farm owner Lemar Koethe in a corn field in Des Moines, Iowa, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

  • Aug. 12

    Republican vice presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., left, fights back tears with his family, wife Janna, daughter Liza with sons Charles and Sam, at his side during a welcome home rally, Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012 in Waukesha, Wis. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)

  • Aug. 13

    A light shines behind President Barack Obama as he speaks during a campaign event at Bayliss Park, Monday, Aug. 13, 2012, in Council Bluffs, Iowa, during a three day campaign bus tour through Iowa. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • Aug. 13

    Cole Nelson, nine months, held by his mother Deborah Nelson, inspects President Barack Obama's face as during a visit to the Iowa State Fair, Monday, Aug. 13, 2012, in Des Moines, Iowa. The president is on a three-day campaign bus tour through Iowa. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • Aug. 16

    FILE - In this Aug. 16, 2012, file photo Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney writes on a white board as he talks about Medicare during a news conference in Greer, S.C. As they rush towards their party conventions, the rival presidential campaigns are trying to invigorate core supporters while reaching out to a sliver of undecided voters who harbor doubts about President Barack Obama yet aren't sold on Republican challenger Mitt Romney. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

  • Aug. 27

    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. reacts to the loud amplified sound from banging the gavel as he checks out the stage at the Republican National Convention inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Monday, Aug. 27, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

  • Aug. 28

    New Jersey Governor Chris Christie walks onto the stage at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. (AP J. Scott Applewhite)

  • Aug. 30

    FILE - This Aug. 30, 2012 file photo shows actor Clint Eastwood addressing an empty chair at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. More than a week after Clint Eastwood delivered a speech to the Republican National Convention, the veteran Hollywood actor-director continues to be mocked for his peculiar, rambling conversation with an imaginary President Barack Obama in an empty chair on stage, begging the question: Will his latest film also be playing to empty seats when it debuts later this month? (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, file)

  • Sept. 5

    In this Sept. 5, 2012 file photo, former President Bill Clinton bows as President Barack Obama walks on stage after Clinton's address to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

  • Sept. 6

    Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

  • Sept. 8

    President Barack Obama, right standing, points at Andre Wupperman, far left, during an unschedule stop at Gator's Dockside, Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012, in Orlando, Fla. When Obama was told that Andrew was born in Hawaii, he jokingly ask for his birth certificate. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Sept. 9

    In this Sept. 9, 2012 file photo, President Barack Obama, right, is picked-up off the ground by Scott Van Duzer, left, owner of Big Apple Pizza and Pasta Italian Restaurant during an unannounced stop, in Ft. Pierce, Fla. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

  • Sept. 9

    In this Sept. 9, 2012, photo Vice President Joe Biden visits with patrons over lunch at Cruisers Diner in Seaman, Ohio. Biden buddied up with bikers, posed for countless pictures at a pizza place and downed an ice cream cone at a Dairy Queen over the weekend as he toured Ohio. Biden loves Ohio. The only question now is whether Ohio loves him _ and President Barack Obama. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • Sept. 25

    Former president Bill Clinton walks with Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney at the Clinton Global Initiative convention in New York, Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2012. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

  • Sept. 27

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney holds a baby after making a campaign stop at American Legion Post 176, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2012, in Springfield, Va. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

  • Oct. 8

    Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney poses for photographs with students of Fairfield Elementary School, Monday, Oct. 8, 2012, in Fairfield, Va. A student, right, reacts as she realizes Romney will crouch down directly in front of her and her classmates for the group photo. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

  • Oct. 11

    Republican vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan, of Wisconsin, right, watches as Vice President Joe Biden, speaks during the vice presidential debate at Centre College, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012, in Danville, Ky. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

  • Oct. 16

    In this Oct. 16, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, left, and President Barack Obama spar during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

  • Oct. 19

    President Barack Obama stretches to shakes hands with supporters after speaking about the choice facing women in the upcoming election, Friday, Oct. 19, 2012, at a campaign event at George Mason University, in Fairfax, Va. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • Oct. 23

    President Barack Obama carries a baby as he prepares to leave a campaign stop in Delray Beach, Fla., Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012, a day after the past presidential debate with Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

  • Oct. 31

    Republican vice presidential candidate, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., holds up his camouflage covered iPhone while speaking during a campaign event in Green Bay, Wis., Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

  • Oct. 31

    US President Barack Obama (R) is greeted by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie upon arriving in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on October 31, 2012 to visit areas hardest hit by the unprecedented cyclone Sandy. Americans sifted through the wreckage of superstorm Sandy on Wednesday as millions remained without power. The storm carved a trail of devastation across New York City and New Jersey, killing dozens of people in several states, swamping miles of coastline, and throwing the tied-up White House race into disarray just days before the vote. AFP PHOTO/Jewel Samad (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Nov. 20

    U.S. President Barack Obama yawns at the beginning of the East Asian Summit Plenary Session at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

  • Nov. 29

    Vice President Joe Biden reacts after being asked to sample food from the bakery section while shopping at a Costco in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012. Biden went shopping for presents and to highlight the importance of renewing middle-class tax cuts so families and businesses have more certainty at this critical time for our economy. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

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