16 Facts About Jacksonian Democracy


Jacksonian democracy was a 19th century political philosophy in the United States that espoused greater democracy for the common man, as that term was then defined.

Political philosophy, or political theory, is the study of topics such as politics, liberty, justice, property, rights, law, and the enforcement of a legal code by authority: what they are, why they are needed, what, if anything, makes a government legitimate, what rights and freedoms it should protect and why, what form it should take and why, what the law is, and what duties citizens owe to a legitimate government, if any, and when it may be legitimately overthrown, if ever.

The United States of America, commonly referred to as the United States or America, is a federal republic composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions.

Democracy, or "rule of the commoners", was originally conceived in Classical Greece, whereby political representatives were chosen by lot from amongst the male citizens: rich and poor.

Jacksonian Democracy by Tom Richey


Originating with President Andrew Jackson and his supporters, it became the nation's dominant political worldview for a generation.

Andrew Jackson was an American statesman who served as the seventh President of the United States from 1829 to 1837.

Age of Jackson: Crash Course US History #14 by CrashCourse


This era, called the Jacksonian Era by historians and political scientists, lasted roughly from Jackson's 1828 election as president until slavery became the dominant issue after 1854 and the American Civil War dramatically reshaped American politics.

The American Civil War was a civil war in the United States fought from 1861 to 1865.


It emerged when the long-dominant Democratic-Republican Party became factionalized during the early-to-mid 1820s.

The Democratic-Republican Party was the American political party in the 1790s that Thomas Jefferson and James Madison formed in opposition to the centralizing policies of the Federalist party.


Jackson's supporters began to form what would become the modern Democratic Party and supporters of his political rival, John Quincy Adams, began to form what would become the Whig Party.


Broadly speaking, the era was characterized by a democratic spirit, and built upon Jackson's equal political policy.


Even before the Jacksonian era began, suffrage had been extended to a majority of white male adult citizens, a result the Jacksonians celebrated.


Jacksonian democracy also promoted the strength of the presidency and executive branch at the expense of Congress, while also seeking to broaden the public's participation in government.


The Jacksonians demanded elected judges and rewrote many state constitutions to reflect the new values.


In national terms they favored geographical expansion, justifying it in terms of Manifest Destiny.

In the 19th century, manifest destiny was a widely held belief in the United States that its settlers were destined to expand across North America.


There was usually a consensus among both Jacksonians and Whigs that battles over slavery should be avoided.


Jackson's expansion of democracy was largely limited to Americans of European descent, and voting rights were extended to adult white males only.


There was little or no progress for the rights of African-Americans and Native Americans.


Jackson's biographer Robert V. Remini argues that Jacksonian Democracy:

Robert Vincent Remini was an American historian and a professor emeritus at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


stretches the concept of democracy about as far as it can go and still remain workable....


As such it has inspired much of the dynamic and dramatic events of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in American history—Populism, Progressivism, the New and Fair Deals, and the programs of the New Frontier and Great Society.

Populism is a political ideology that holds that virtuous citizens are mistreated by a small circle of elites, who can be overthrown if the people recognize the danger and work together.

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