Among President Jackson’s disputed decisions was the handling of he nullification crisis, President Jackson veto of the bank recharge bill, and the Indian removal policy. Andrew Jackson is one of the greatest United States presidents do to the actions of the well-being of the people. President Jackson was a true democrat in maintaining the integrity of the Union. Although President Andrew Jackson made some tough decisions that made some people angry, Jackson is revered by historians today and is named the father of modern democracy.
President Andrew Jackson is an example of the American Dream, born into a poor family but rising up to come President of the United States in 1828. Nullification is the state’s right to nullify within its borders a law passed by Congress or a proclamation of the President. The Nullification Crisis was a fierce political battle between Jackson and Calhoun. John C. Calhoun, a War Hawk, spearheaded the wave of nullification, beginning in South Carolina.
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Calhoun believed in stronger state governments, whereas Jackson argued that nullification was treason and its supporters were traitors. South Carolina started to question Congress after a law was passed that emitted US imports, an action thought to have ruined much of the foreign market. This led Calhoun to the belief of nullification, since the government consisted of a creation of the states, then the states themselves should have the right to declare a federal law null and void within that particular state. To fight for the cause, Calhoun resigned as Jackson’s vice president. Calhoun, together with the people of South Carolina, further pursued the theory of nullification and pushed for its acceptance. South Carolina finally began to threaten to secede from the Union, as Andrew Jackson ad been declaring nullification an act of treason and petitioning Congress to use military force to suppress this uprising. As the final straw, Jackson introduced his nullification proclamation, which came from President Jackson’s strong belief in democracy.
In the first message, Jackson states the important principle, “that the majority is to govern. ” Nullification, to him, violated that view of majority rule, as it put the state above the federal government. History shows Andrew Jackson was right in issuing this proclamation, as less than two days after the nullification crisis ended, President Jackson was elected for his second term. South Carolina backed down after the proclamation was issued, a moment when the president demonstrated great power in maintaining power of the states and keeping the union intact.
To soften the blow, Henry Clay and John Calhoun brought about a new tariff that reduced protection while still keeping the Presidents authority intact. 3 Andrew Jackson’s handling of the nullification crisis not only solved a problem in the US, but it even helped Abraham Lincoln and other presidents following, in some of their difficult lattice decisions. The next problem Jackson faced as an American president would prove a great test that intimidation with military force alone could not handle.
The Second Bank of the United States had more or less monopolized the nation’s wealth, and it was up to be recreated. At this point in 1830, the bank “was responsible for between 15 and 20 percent of all the bank lending in the country, and had issued upwards of 40 percent of all the bank notes in circulation nationwide. Its capital of $35 million was more than twice as large as the total expenditure of the federal overspent. Between 1830 and 1832, the Bank expanded further, increasing its notes and loans by 60 percent and its deposits by 40 percent. 4 Jackson felt that the bank had too much power in the nation and president Jackson wanted to redistribute it. However, what President Andrew Jackson was trying to accomplish was contrary to the belief of the president of the bank, Nicholas Bridle, and his close friend Henry Clay, who remained a long time political rival of Jackson. They saw Jackson as trying to destroy the bank, as opposed to Jackson’s view of reforming it. The bank supporters failed to see things Jackson’s way and there would be smaller situation quickly escalated into full-fledged political war.
On top of the amount of sheer power the bank had, another problem Jackson saw was the fact the bank issued paper money. It was Jackson’s wish to only use the safer method of coinage, gold and silver to best protect Americans. The bank war reached it peak when it applied for renewal of its charter in 1832. “In January, a recharge bill came through both houses of Congress, proposing a curtailment of some of the Banks powers… But paving its main lines intact. “5 Almost immediately after reaching Congress the bill was passed, leaving Jackson in an awkward position.
Jackson still did not know what to do about the bank bill, therefore President Jackson vetoed it. This single action gave way to rockiness in the relationship between Jackson and the bank and its followers. This lost Jackson much support in the public eye in the following months, and it was thought that Henry Clay, funded by Abide, could win the election of 1832. Andrew Jackson simply did not have the same resources that Clay had, as the bank awe the importance of getting Clay elected. Jackson managed to surprise everyone, winning the election and gaining a second term of office.
On March 4, 1833, Jackson was sworn in for the second term and was finally able to begin destroying the bank. After the election, Andrew Jackson’s first move was removing the government’s deposits in the Second Bank and putting them into various state banks. The bank retaliated against this action as Bridle essentially caused a small recession by raising the interest rates. Although he was trying to make a point that the bank could not purport itself without government money, President Jackson’s actions lost the Bank much of its supporters, leading it to its end.
In 1836, the bank was denied its recharge for good. Rather than allowing Jackson to reform the bank, Bridle tried to fight the president, and lost. This was a great political victory for Andrew Jackson as president Jackson proved to himself and the nation two things; that one was not only successful when one could use force, but one was also successful when one did not. In the bank war, Andrew Jackson proved himself more than competent in middling the trials of politics, and proved himself as worthy of being called one of the great presidents.
The final of Andrew Jackson’s biggest challenges was the Indian Removal Act of 1830. According to Sean Willets, the Indian Removal “has, in recent historical writing, become the great moral stain on the Jackson legacy, much as it was to Christian humanitarian reformers in 1829 and 1830 a policy, supposedly, that aimed at the ‘infiltration’ and ‘genocide’ of the Indians. “6 Many Americans were against this legislation because they believed that Americans were taking the rights f Indians and treating them as slaves.
The removal came from the threat Native Americans gave. They wanted to be able to have their own constitution, separating them from the US. One of Jackson’s biggest fears was that “sovereign Indian nations would prove easy prey for manipulation by hostile foreign powers. “7 To Jackson, all Indians were inferiors to whites, and the Indian removal Act was an act that would give land to white settlers. He argued that the legislation would provide land for white citizens, improve security against foreign invaders and encourage the civilization of the Native Americans.
Andrew Jackson even argued in one speech, this “will separate the Indians from immediate contact with settlements of whites; enable them to pursue happiness in their own way and under their own rude institutions; will retard the progress of decay, which is lessening their numbers, and perhaps cause them gradually, under the protection of the government and through the influences of good counsels, to cast off their savage habits and become an interesting, civilized, and Christian community. 8 The piece of the story that is dark, however, is how Jackson responds when the Cherokees take a stand. In 1832, the Cherokee Indians successfully argued their case to the Supreme Court, and the Court agreed with them. At this point, Jackson overturned their objection and continued in his proceedings. This fierce stand, even against the Supreme Court, is what should keep Andrew Jackson from being considered one of the greatest presidents in American history.
This was an immense failure, going against the serration of powers and acting alone against another branch of government. The Supreme Court tried to reason with him to no avail, something a truly great president would take deed of. Andrew Jackson is one of the greatest presidents to ever lead the United States of America. Among his top achievements, President Jackson fought secession and chaos in the great Nullification Crisis in the south, saving the Union from a viscous civil war during the sass’s and brought down a great monopoly in the Second Bank.
More than any other president before him, Jackson made the office of the presidency the center of action in national politics and government. 9 An important long-term consequence of his presidency was being the first president to commit to inning for a certain end, in President Jackson case the second election was to reform the Second Bank of the United States.