Andrew Jackson’s Presidency
Andrew Jackson: The Seventh President of the United States
Andrew Jackson became the seventh president of the United States of America on March 4, 1829. His time in office lasted until March 4, 1837. His vice presidents included John C. Calhoun from 1829-1832 and Martin Van Buren from 1833-1837, who succeeded Jackson as the eighth president.
Though he won the presidency, Andrew Jackson’s journey to the White House was not easy. Five years earlier, in 1824, he ran for president and received more popular votes than his opponent, John Quincy Adams. Despite receiving the most popular votes, Jackson did not receive enough Electoral College votes to be elected. The decision fell to the House of Representatives, who met on February 9, 1825. They elected John Quincy Adams, with House Speaker Henry Clay as Adams’s chief supporter.
Rumors began to circulate that Adams and Clay struck a deal to ensure Adams’s presidency. These suspicions were largely confirmed when Adams appointed Clay as his Secretary of State shortly during his tenure as president. Jackson called the suspected deal “a corrupt bargain,” and besides being robbed of the presidency, he felt strongly that the American people had been deprived of the ability to choose the president themselves, as was originally intended.
Thus began a brutal campaign trail, as Adams’s supporters made malicious accusations during Jackson’s presidential candidacy in 1828. Perhaps the lowest of these were direct attacks at Jackson and his wife, Rachel’s character and the origins of their marriage.
Fortunately, Jackson had a few wise political moves of his own to maintain his love from the public and to secure the presidency.
Andrew Jackson’s presidency marked a radical change for a still fairly young nation. He believed the President of the United States should stand up for the common man and changed what it meant to be the voice of the people. In doing so, he made revolutionary changes (some controversial) to the nation.
Although several presidents and founding fathers hinted at the idea that a president should not serve more than two terms, the term limit of a president was not actually established until March 21, 1947, under the twenty-second amendment to the United States Constitution.
Jackson did not continue his presidency into a third term but instead, continued to demonstrate significant influence in the government after his presidency. He had a devout following, extensive connections and ample experience that made him a major player in elections and decisions beyond his two terms in office.