What was Andrew Jackson's vision for the U.S.?

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mkoren eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Andrew Jackson’s vision for the United States was to make our democracy more accessible to the common man. Jackson believed the wealthy had too much influence in and control of the government. He wanted to give the average person a greater role in the government.

Several things occurred to help accomplish this goal. One change that was made was the replacement of caucuses with nominating conventions. With a nominating convention, the members of the party chose the candidates that would run for office. With a caucus, the party leaders chose these candidates.

Another change that occurred was that some states dropped the requirement that a person had to own property in order to be able to vote. As a result, over 80% of white males voted in the presidential election of 1840 while over 90% of white males possessed the right to vote by 1840. White male voting rates also increased in other elections.

A third change was that the people chose the electors to the Electoral College instead of having the state legislature choose them.

Andrew Jackson also developed the spoils system. He began to give government jobs to his political supporters, many who were average people. This helped to break the grip the upper class had on holding government jobs.


pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Andrew Jackson's vision for the United States was essentially what we would call a populist vision today.  Jackson believed strongly in the idea of democracy and of rule by and for the "common man."  It was for this reason that Jackson took actions like the destruction of the Second Bank of the United States.  Jackson believed that the elites of society were pushing for policies that were detrimental to the masses. Therefore, his vision of America was one in which the masses were empowered and had a great deal of influence over government policies.  In this way, they could get the government to enact policies that helped the masses and cut away at the power of the elites.