Would you have voted for Andrew Jackson in the 1828 election?

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larrygates eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Hindsight is of course 20-20, and if one knew then what is now known of Jackson's policy toward the Indians, he would not have received my vote. However, if I were a U.S. citizen of voting age in 1828 with no knowledge of Jackson than was then available, I not only would have voted for him, I would have enthusiastically supported his election.

First of all Jackson was a war hero. He defeated the British at the Battle of New Orleans which gained enormous prestige for himself and the nation. Americans tend to favor war heroes as presidents, and Jackson certainly would have been no exception. Secondly, he was a self made man who had pulled himself up by his own efforts. He readily identified with and was seen as a hero of the common man. This too would have made him attractive to me. Third, the "corrupt bargain" between John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay, whether there was in fact a bargain or not, would have caused me grave concern. As did many Americans, I would probably feel that Jackson had been cheated out of the Presidency in 1824, and would do all I could to ensure his election the next time around.

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