A rematch between two bitter rivals, Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams, the presidential election of 1828 was highlighted by the split of electoral votes in New York and Maryland. Andrew Jackson had swept through the west, gaining every single state, and even got Pennsylvania. The winner from the election of 1824 by the ‘corrupt’ bargain, John Q. Adams, had gained the support of all the northeast states. However, the real surprise was the split electoral votes in Maryland and New York.
The northern states loved Adams because he favored elites and their manufacturing industries. The south and west favored Jackson because he believed in equal opportunity for any citizen of the United States of America. Two states, Maryland and New York, did not give all their electoral votes to either Adams or Jackson, but were divided equally among the two. The reason for this split was both states were divided into districts that all had one vote. These districts could settle on who they wanted to give their electoral vote to. In every single other state, the electoral votes were decided upon by the state legislature, and once decided, all the electoral votes would be given to one candidate. However, in lone New York, the whole state could back Adams, but if one small self-sufficient farmer district wanted Jackson, then they could award their one electoral vote exclusively for him. So, if there was a dispute in states with a system like New York, the electoral vote could be split.
The split between these two states showed how divided and diverse one state could be. If one little district went against the majority, it changes where the electoral votes are distributed, and can thus change the outcome of the election. New York and Maryland proved that one little group can make a large difference. These small changes made the election of 1828 unique, and actually exemplified how dissimilar one state’s people could be.
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