Andrew Jackson and the Bank

In: Historical Events

Submitted By Jasleen
Words 405
Pages 2
In 1834, Jackson began a push to move towards "hard" currency, gradually phasing out small bills over more than twenty years. He and Benton believed that only gold and silver provided proper security, as, during financial bust periods, working-class people could not get credit. Hard money, then, ensured the workers would always be paid in money that had real value. The move terrified many rich Democrats, who saw a future in which they might not be able to conduct business with large bills. In a final attempt to end the Bank, Jackson ordered it to cease issuing pensions to Revolutionary War veterans and to relinquish those funds. Biddle refused, and the bank battle quickly deteriorated. Jackson's own Attorney General questioned the moves, and Jackson faced barrages from business leaders up and down the East Coast who thought he must mean to ruin the country.

Some Democrats began to leave the party. Joining with National Republican, states righters, nullifiers, and other Jackson enemies, they formed the Whig party–headed by none other than Clay. The views of those involved were so disparate that they could only unify under the banner of opposing Jackson's bold new uses of Presidential authority. Indeed, the Whig newspapers soon mockingly anointed Jackson "King Andrew I." The new party, coupled with a rumor that a new bank might launch in New York to counter the national bank, brought the nation new fear of financial disaster.

Although Van Buren eventually quieted the new bank rumors, the country still hung in the balance when the Senate voted to officially censure Jackson for his actions in February 1834. Adding insult to injury, the Senate also refused to confirm Jackson's new Treasury Secretary. Jackson filed a protest with the Senate, saying the Bank's abuses of power made it an "imperative duty" for him as chief executive to rid the country of the Bank. He…...

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