How did Andrew Jackson help the "common man?"

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mkoren eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Andrew Jackson did many things to help the common man. One thing that happened while Jackson was president was nominating conventions were used instead of caucuses to choose the people who would run for office in some elections. In the caucus system, it used to be that the party leaders would choose the candidates that would run in an election. With the use of nominating conventions, party members now would choose the people who would run in an election.

Andrew Jackson also developed the concept of the spoils system. In this system, the winning candidate would choose the people who would fill the government jobs. These jobs usually go to the candidate’s political supporters. Andrew Jackson gave many of these government jobs to the common man, instead of giving them to the wealthy.

Andrew Jackson also took on the national bank. He believed the bank helped businesses while hurting the common man. Thus, Jackson refused to renew the bank’s charter in 1832. Since the existing charter allowed the national bank to exist until 1836, Jackson began to put the government’s money in state banks instead of the national bank. Jackson wanted to get rid of the national bank because he believed it favored the wealthy, not the common man. Andrew Jackson did many things to help the common man.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

We cannot say for sure that President Jackson actually helped the "common man," but we can say that he took actions that were, in his mind, meant to help the common man.

One thing that Jackson did that can be seen as helping the common man was Indian Removal.  By forcing the Indians to move out of the Southeast, Jackson provided more land for common white settlers to settle on.  

Perhaps the most important thing that Jackson did for the common people was to destroy the Bank of the United States.  Jackson believed that it was being run by financial elites for their own benefit and that it harmed the common person.  By killing it, he was helping the common man.

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