Andrew Jackson was elected by popular voting, more nearly than any
president before. He acted as the direct representative of common man as the
president of his country.
Andrew Jackson was born in a backwoods settlement located in Carolinas in the
year 1767. The education received by him was irregular. But for 2 years in his
late teens, he studied law and became a brilliant lawyer at that young age in
Jackson was fierce when it came to his honor. He engaged in more than a few
brawls and fought a number of duels mainly for the honor of his wife Rachel. In
one of this duel, he even killed the other man who had cast an unjustified
disgrace on his wife.
Andrew Jackson had sufficie
nt wealth to build a mansion and buy slaves. His mansion was called the
Hermitage and was located near Nashville. He was the first man from Tennessee
who was elected to the House of Representatives. He also served in the senate
for a small period of time.
In the war of 1812, he was ranked a major general and became a hero when he
defeated British at the New Orleans.
Jackson got the highest total of votes in the election of 1824, although he did
not become the president then. The elections in 1829 was won easily by him and
in his first annual message to the congress, he suggested removal of the
Electoral College. He also tried to introduce democracy at the Federal offices.
One can say that the path taken by Jackson was a mild one. He criticized the
officeholders where people seemed to have the benefit of life tenure without
much work. He believed that the duties in the Government can be plain and simple
and the work in the office should be given to people who deserve it.
Since the politics of the United States was polarized around Jackson and his
opponents, two parties were formed from the Republican Party – the
Democrats, lead by Jackson and the Whigs, lead by his opponents.
Daniel Webster and Henry Clay were among the popular leaders in Jackson’s
opposition and proclaimed themselves as the defender of the popular liberties.
Cartoonist portrayed Jackson as King Andrew I.
The reason behind the accusations lied in the fact that Jackson was the first
president who did not rely on the Congress for making policies. Instead he used
his veto power to assume command.
The Second Bank of the United States was a Private company, around which the
greatest party battle in American politics was surrounded. The bank had a
government-sponsored monopoly over many areas and Jackson was against it.
Jackson’s hostility towards the bank made the Bank use all it powers
Webster and Clay led the fight for re-chartering the bank in the Congress as
attorneys. Jackson told Martin Van Buren , “The bank is trying to kill me,
but I will kill it!” He charged the Bank with undue privileges and vetoed
the re-charted bill.
Jackson’s views were accepted by the people of America and he won more
than 50 percent of votes in the elections of 1832, which was more than 5 times
than Henry Clay.A head-on challenge between John C. Calhoun and Andrew Jackson
took place when the former tried to get rid of a high protective tariff on them.
When South Carolina went on to nullify their tariff, Jackson sent armed forces
to Charleston and threatened Calhoun privately. Violence looked inevitable, but
Clay negotiated a compromise between the two parties and tariffs were lowered
and idea of nullification was dropped.When the Senate rejected the nomination of
his favorite Martin Van Buren as the Minister of England, Jackson said, “By
the Eternal! I'll smash them!" And he did. Van Buren became the Vice
President and became the President when Jackson retired.