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Assessing Andrew Jackson

            Adorning the face of the twenty dollar bill and consistently being polled as one of the greatest presidents in American history, one would assume that Andrew Jackson's two presidential terms were nothing short of legendary. However, assessing "Old Hickory" Jackson's presidency is both a complex and a controversial topic. A popular American general from a humble background as a poor Irish immigrant, Jackson had a significant following of Democratic "Jacksonites" by the time of his second campaign for office. Thanks to his copious public support and due to the "Corrupt Bargain" which charred the reputation of his opposition, John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson became the seventh president of the United States in 1828. His reign as president is speckled with moments of strong leadership and forceful negotiations in the political arena, such as his assertive handling of the Nullification Crisis of 1832, which displayed his staying power and stubbornness in office. On the contrary, Andrew Jackson's iron-will and unscrupulous character damaged his integrity and led the nation into a great amount of trouble both during and in the years that followed his presidency. Namely, his borderline corrupt introduction of the spoils system to the U.S. government, callous expulsion of Native Americans in the Removal Act of 1830 and destruction of the Bank of the United States which resulted in a financial crisis are grounds enough to scorn the inadequacy and desolation of Jackson's reign. .
             Upon his inauguration in March of 1829, Andrew Jackson suspiciously initiated the sweeping removal of high-ranking officials from their posts in government with claims that he intended to rid Washington of the corrupt, lazy and complacent behavior that was common among tenured officers. Working hostility so as not to give the public reason to suspect his deceitful ploy, his next move was to appoint many of his comrades and loyal supporters into the newly vacant offices.

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