Jackson’s 1828 Election Setting Precedent for US Democracy
The presidential election of 1828 between senator Andrew Jackson and former President John Quincy Adams, not only broke old traditions, but also set a new precedent for true democracy in the United States. This election was foreshadowed by the great controversy in Adams first victory over Jackson. A shady deal between the House speaker, Henry Clay, and John Quincy Adams, put Adams in the White House, and promoted Clay to the position of secretary of state. At the time, the speaker of the House and his contemporaries had the power to make the final decision on a close presidential election. Clay, with the power in the house influenced the other members to vote for Adams, and in return he would be given the position of Secretary of State. At this time, each secretary of state from the beginning of the new government had been voted into presidency so many thought Adams gave the next presidency to Clay. Quincy Adams hoped to make much advancement to society, but all of the Jackson followers in government hindered Adams’ decisions. Clouded by his deal with Clay, Adams decided not to use the spoil system and fire the Jacksonian Democrats from office. He figured he would deal with any of the consequences that were to come. This decision would prove to be horrible. A second tradition that would end is the aristocracy of the Presidents. Each of the first 6 presidents had been born into a very privileged family, full of wealth and education. These men had been sent to the highly respected academies and universities, and were built for a position in politics, particularly to be the President. Jackson on the other hand was born into a poor, uneducated farm on the eastern parts of Tennessee. His parents and siblings passed away when he was at a young age, and Jackson is considered to be “self-built”. He lived alone, taught himself how to farm, read and write, and eventually he was educated and wealthy. He is most...
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