Andrew Jackson’s Presidency Crisis Essay
President Andrew Jackson’s presidency was riddled with many disputes and issues. The infamous Bank War was an issue during Jackson’s administration. The nullification crisis was also a serious issue during his presidency. The Indian removal issue was also a prominent issue during his presidency. Jackson’s presidency was, and still is, widely criticized for his rash and outlandish decisions in retaliation to these issues. President Jackson believed the Second Bank of the United States was corrupt and took away from the people’s power and money. He wanted to destroy the bank as soon as he was elected into office.
Jackson’s strategies to bring about the downfall of the bank were carefully thought out between him and his “Kitchen Cabinet”, a group of close friends that gave Jackson advice throughout his presidency. Nicholas Biddle was the president of the Second Bank of the U. S. and Jackson’s main adversary in the Bank War. At the young age of 37, Biddle was appointed president of the Second Bank of the U. S. Jackson felt that Biddle was young and inexperienced, and that the bank held too much power and it did not answer to a higher authority, giving it absolute control over the nation’s money.
Biddle stated that Jackson had no right to change the state of currency because he had no alternative. Jackson retaliated by stating that he would put in motion a reform program for the economy. But the court ruled that the bank was a constitutional institution. Jackson began to fall behind in the Bank war because of problems within his cabinet such as his cabinet denying to interact with Peggy Eaton, wife of Jackson’s Secretary of War John Eaton. Jackson was sympathetic towards Eaton because Jackson’s wife had a similar issue. Biddle requested for a recharter for the bank because its old charter was about to meet its deadline.
Jackson vetoed the recharter, stating that the bank took away from the rights of states and that the bank was a monopoly that benefited foreigners mostly. In the Election of 1832, the bank channeled funds into Henry Clay’s election campaign, which contradicted the bank’s promise that it would stay apolitical. Jackson won the election of 1832 with fireworks, barbecues, and parades instead of newspapers and brochures. This gave him another chance to bring down the bank. He transferred all of the nation’s money into state banks, or pet banks, in order to reduce the bank’s power.
The bank, knowing it would become obsolete, tried to fight back by ceasing loans but that only made the bank even less powerful. Jackson then brought in the specie, gold and silver paper currencies, but they became obsolete because of inflation and fraud. Jackson then created the Specie Circular, which was a new type of currency, it was brought into effect and it brought a plausible state of currency to the nation. South Carolina wanted the Tarriff of 1828 and the Tariff of 1832 to be nullified because it was unconstitutional and took away from their economy.
South Carolina said that the tariff’s tax was too high. Jackson denied their right to state that the tariffs were unconstitutional. This was contradictory to his views that states should hold more power. He then demanded the right to go into South Carolina and legally kill anyone that tried to deny the tariff. This was called the Force Bill. . South Carolina did not have many supporters outside of their state. The other southern states were not willing to support South Carolina. The crisis was solved when Henry Clay came up with a compromise to lower protection of the tariff.
The Indian Removal Act of 1830 brought much controversy to whether it was constitutional or not to remove the Indians from their land. Jackson believed that Indians should be moved farther west so that Americans could settle on the Indians’ land. He said it was best for the Indians but in Cherokee Nation V. Georgia, the Cherokee Nation said that Jackson had no right to move them. They lost because they were considered domestic dependent nations. Then in Worcester V. Georgia, the ruling was overturned and the Indians were given the right to stay.
Jackson ignored this and forcibly removed them in a horrible death walk known as the Trail of Tears. 1 out of 4 Indians died on the Trail of Tears. This led to many of the country’s citizens to criticize Jackson for forcibly removing the Indians. The Indian Removal issue widely considered Jackson’s main issue of his presidency because it was a reoccuring issue throughout his time as president. Jackson’s presidency is, at best, a mix of good and bad. The issues at hand during his presidency were very serious issues that Jackson felt he knew how to handle. He acted on his own instinct and not on advice from his cabinet members.
After all, his temper is what made him a respected president. He stabilized the nation’s economy for his time but set it up for disaster when future presidents took office. The tariffs were soon nullified and the South once again prospered. The Indians were put into reservations shortly after Jackson’s attempt to push them off to the edge of the West. Though he never intended to cause such problems during his presidency, his straight-forward, stern attitude caused many of the issues to be blown out of proportion. But he will always be considered a great and respected president.
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