History Response Post 2

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Please respond to, agree, disagree, share thoughts, add to this post in 50 words or more. 



1/ How did Jackson redefine the Presidency under his two terms in office? To answer this question more fully, please watch the video, above. It is only 10-minutes long, but it is packed with information (and a nice break from Foner)..

President Andrew Jackson instituted a change in U.S. politics by suggesting to all Americans that they should be part of politics and vote for their presidents. The common Americans before Jackson were not allowed to vote for the U.S.’s President. Only a few people among the “elite” of the nation had the chance to choose the president. The fathers of the nation organized politics in a way that the Congress had more power than the elected President, which President Andrew Jackson disagreed with. As mentioned in the video, Jackson stated that he had a “special role and leadership” because he was the first president to be elected by all the American people. He came up with the idea to have his supporters around him and he let go 100 federal workers. He used “the veto” as one of his most commanding arguments and was also the pioneer of the Democratic Party.

2 / Next, please list and discuss the 3 most important points made in this video. In your discussion of these points, bring in examples from all that you have read this week on Jackson. Be specific and show us that you’ve done your reading.

 It is revealed in the video that before Andrew Jackson, only one category of people was allowed to vote for the president, the president did not have enough power in the government, and the government was run by only one party. The book (p.357) narrated that at first, only white men who were landowners had the privilege, the “property qualification,” to vote during the 1820s and 1830s. Few states refused to abolish that property qualification so that more people could vote but, by the 1860s, that privilege was terminated. Political leaders believed that the common American did not possess the intellectual maturity to choose the president. People associated the act of voting more as a right than as a privilege, and Jackson’s influence in politics made the change possible. The process took a long time, but it also allowed women the right to vote in 1920 (p.362).

Jackson was a supporter of States’ rights, so upon his first term in the office, he claimed and also made sure that the Federal government did not dominate states’ affairs (p.380). He used his power to legitimize Federal authority, even if he was also a profound activist of States’ sovereignty. Jackson suggested transparent organization of the parties. He became the leader of the Democratic Party, which was a rival of the Whigs party led by John C. Calhoun and established in 1836. Their point of views differed on the interference of politics in people’s privacy and also on the way the economy and banking systems should flow (p.383). Jackson made possible the payment of gold and silver for federal lands, and his party was in favor of the paper money, while its opponent did not support it.

3/ Do you agree with the video’s main points? Does the Foner text contradict the video? (For instance, surely Jefferson’s “Revolution” of 1800 shows us a president who did not wait for the Congress to set national policy and direction? Yes?) 

The main point of the video is that Andrew Jackson’s presidency revolutionized the political landscape of the United States, and the book emphasizes that idea. Foner provides more detailed facts to help us comprehend Jackson’s personality. The “Revolution” of 1800 was more about the market economy, which favored an effective growth in trade but also, an improvement of most people’s living status around the country. Yes, Jackson did not wait for the Congress. He used instead his veto in1832 and created the “pet banks” to oblige the transfer of federal funds into local banks.

4/ Compare President Obama’s presidency to that of Jackson’s. Do we still see vestiges of Jackson’s influence? Has the trend toward a more powerful chief executive increased in recent years? In what way? Support your claims not with generalizations, but hard facts. 

On their foreign policies, both presidents took actions to defend the nation’s sovereignty. In 2009, Obama ordered U.S. troops to leave Iraq and in 2011, he authorized the operation that permitted the killing of Osama Bin Laden. In the same way, Jackson approved the Indian Removal Act in 1830, which relocated the Native Americans community to the west of the Mississippi River. Regarding domestic affairs, in 2010, President Obama signed the Wall Street Reform and also the Consumer Protection Act to empower financial regulations. President Andrew Jackson, for his part, reduced the power of the Second Bank of the United States in some points and strengthened the states’ interests over federal laws on the right to nullify tariff legislation. We still see president Jackson’s influence in politics. Elections are much more organized, and the executive role of the president has more power.

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