I probably wouldn't have voted for Jackson. My main reason would be an instinctive aversion to any kind of populism, which, despite its democratic rhetoric , is always an elite construct of one kind or another, in my opinion. That said, I would have been somewhat sympathetic to Jackson over...
I probably wouldn't have voted for Jackson. My main reason would be an instinctive aversion to any kind of populism, which, despite its democratic rhetoric, is always an elite construct of one kind or another, in my opinion. That said, I would have been somewhat sympathetic to Jackson over his unfair treatment in the aftermath of the previous Presidential election. There's no doubt that the shady, backstairs deal cooked up between Adams and Clay was indeed a "corrupt bargain" that put the interests of a handful of individuals ahead of the country as a whole. So there was more than a sense of justice about Jackson's victory in 1828.
The election of 1828 was characterized by its (more than) fair share of mudslinging. Jackson was accused by his opponents, among other things, of being responsible for the wholesale massacre of scores of Native American civilians. Although just about every white person in the United States at that time believed Native Americans to be racially "inferior," there was still a general sense that Jackson's conduct toward them had crossed the line, as indeed it had. There was something disreputable about Jackson, an air of roguishness about him of which his disgraceful treatment of Native Americans was the most notorious example.
Largely on grounds of personality, then, I would not have voted for Jackson. His enthusiastic support for slavery would also have been a sticking point. He was accused of actually being involved in the slave trade at one point, a charge he fiercely denied. Yet there can be no doubt that virtually all of Jackson's wealth was derived from slavery. That being the case, there was no chance whatsoever that a Jackson Administration would ever have made any moves to ameliorate the horrors of slavery, let alone make any attempt to abolish it.