to mention the Kentucky-based opposition of Henry Clay, who scored points in skewering Jacksonian Indian-removal policies. The bank war dominating Jackson's second term suggests even more clearly how analysis of the Jackson presidency involved class and economic interest no less than regional ones. The difficulties of treating the Jackson presidency as first and foremost a ``southern'' phenomenon relates to a basic calculus of all national electoral coalitions. Projecting the ``Red State'' configuration of our own day back into the nineteenth century could well have yielded the same minority status for Democrats in 1828 and 1832 as it did for modern-day Republicans in 2008 and 2012. The difference came in the Jacksonians' success in framing a truly national appeal, in which their standard-bearer resonated beyond his ``southern'' and ``heartland'' base. Jackson realized that his elevation to the White House (and his hold on a second term) depended upon his kindling enthusiasm among key constituencies in locales like New York and Pennsylvania. He did this by making aristocratic Whiggery into the country's existential enemy. As such, his party's pursuit of power required a geo-cultural appeal than went beyond that which could be provided by a merely ``southern'' leader. Cheathem's mixed
Journal of the Early Republic – University of Pennsylvania Press
Published: Aug 12, 2014
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