How did the American system become more democratic during the age of Jackson?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The American system became more democratic during Andrew Jackson’s presidency. Prior to this time, most people in government were from the upper class and were wealthy. This changed when Andrew Jackson became President.

During his presidency, several changes were made to get more people involved in our political system. In some places, the requirement of owning property in order to vote was dropped. This allowed many more white males to vote. Nominating conventions were used to choose a party’s candidates for office. No longer would the party leaders decide this by themselves. Party members would be involved in this process. The people also began to choose the electors who would serve in the Electoral College. Previously, this was done by the state legislature. Andrew Jackson began the spoils system. This was a system where the winning candidate gave government jobs to his supporters. Andrew Jackson gave many government jobs to common people. Common people were a big part of Jackson’s base of support. Using the spoils system, helped to reduce the hold on these jobs that the upper class had for many years. More people became more involved in the American political system while Jackson was President.

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