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Andrew Jackson and the election of 1828

A general overview of the rise of Andrew Jackson and the election of 1828. This discussion also compares the election of 1828 to the recent presidential race between Obama and McCain. The following specific questions are addressed:
1. How did Jackson's campaign try to portray Adams to the American people?
2. How did Adams' campaign try to portray Jackson to the American people?
3. How did each candidate in 1828 try to portray himself?
4. In what ways did the use of character issues in 1828 compare with the use of character issues in 2008?
5. In your opinion, do these types of campaigns benefit or hurt American politics?

The election of 1828 is perhaps the first campaign where the mudslinging and not the speeches were what people remembered most. One reason for this was that the candidates' positions were already well known. These positions were very different and would have made for some good debates. However, the mudslinging quickly gained the upper hand and matters of policy and position were never really of interest after that. It is said by some that the importance of image creation as opposed to substantial policy issues became clear in the election of 1828. From this point on, the "image" portrayed by the candidates' campaigns would be at least as important, and sometimes much more important, than the issues that the candidates supported and communicated to the American people.
These two men had faced off in 1824. Though Jackson had won the popular vote the election was decided in the House of Representatives. It is believed that Henry Clay, a fierce opponent of Andrew Jackson, used his influence in the House to swing the vote to Adams. Jackson and his supporters referred to this as "the Corrupt Bargain." Jackson was nominated as early as 1825 and set out gathering information and preparing for his personal feud with Adams.

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Credible websites regarding the election of 1828
http://library.duke.edu/exhibits/sevenelections/elections/1828/index.html
http://www.suite101.com/content/image-making-in-the-presidential-election-of-1828-a292385
http://www.presidentprofiles.com/Washington-Johnson/John-Quincy-Adams-Election-of-1828.html

At least two articles on the 2008 presidential election between Obama and McCain
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/oct/06/uselections2008.johnmccain
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/16/us/politics/16debate.html
http://www.britannica.com/blogs/2008/10/8-elections-that-shed-light-on-campaign-2008
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election,_2008

The election of 1828 is perhaps the first campaign where the mudslinging and not the speeches were what people remembered most. One reason for this was that the candidates' positions were already well known. These positions were very different and would have made for some good debates. However, the mudslinging quickly gained the upper hand and matters of policy and position were never really of interest after that. It is said by some that the importance of image creation as opposed to substantial policy issues became clear in the election of 1828. From this point on, the "image" portrayed by the candidates' campaigns would be at least as important, and sometimes much more important, than the issues that the candidates supported and communicated to the American people.
These two men had faced off in 1824. Though Jackson had won the ...

Solution Summary

This is a discussion of the rise of Andrew Jackson and the bitter election of 1828. This also includes a comparison between the 1828 election and the recent presidential race between McCain and Obama. Includes over 900 words of original text with links to key websites.

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