Written Communication / Critical Thinking
The presidency and American policy were permanently influenced by Andrew Jackson. Jackson’s national fame as a military hero became his leadership in the conflict of 1812 and in the 1820s and 1830s became the most important, polarizing, American political figures. Jackson returned four years later after his loss to John Quincy Adams when the presidential election was contentious, he defeated Adams and became the seventh nation’s president. In contrast to other renowned, strong presidents, Jackson defined himself by opposing one and not by adopting a legislative programme.
By forging direct connections with the voters, Jackson strengthened against Congress. Although he was sent to Congress, his official messages talked to the people in plain and powerful language. Jackson reversed a tradition of executive deference to legislative supremacy and softly chosen himself as a forum for the people, their only defender, and their loyalty in Congress. Jackson expanded presidential authority in other ways as well. He ruled over his cabinet and compelled his members not to execute his orders. He passed through, in two terms, four State Secretaries and five treasury secretaries. With his officials under his arms, Jackson developed and implemented his policies through a private coterie of advisers and journalists called the “The Kitchen Cabinet.”
His audacity and his dominant style led his adversaries to call him King Andrew, and use Whig’s name to show opposition to executive tyranny. He was both a fiery and an outspoken partisan patriot. As for the National Union, he denounced the cancelation and separating of policies such as tariffs, which fostered sectional division, as an indivisible and perpetual union. In his presidency, Jackson’s strong personality played an important role. He was violent and his political positions were still debated to the extent of his personal animus. Some love his power and boldness, others see him as a vengeful, self-obsessed person. As a statement of American accomplishments, I believe many can learn from his straightforward personality.