The "Era of the Common Man", through the 1820 's and 1830 's is also known as the "Age of Jackson". The Jacksonian Democrats thought of themselves as saviors of the common people, the constitution, political democracy, and economic opportunity. To the extent that they attempted to support equal economic opportunity and some aspects of political democracy, I agree with their view of themselves. I cannot agree however, with the notion that Jacksonian Democrats were champions of individual liberties or the constitution. Overall, the Jacksonian Democrats high regard of themselves was clearly distorted.
To a degree, Jacksonian Democrats did uphold equal economic opportunity. For example, in the Supreme Court case, Charles River Bridge v.
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Jackson threatened to send a militia to enforce the tariff collection and the Jacksonian Congress passed a force bill approving this military action if necessary. Finally, under the Jacksonian Administration, the U.S. post office suppressed abolitionist mail into the South. A clear violation of the 1st amendment, the Jacksonian Democrats made no move to uphold the Constitution in this case. (Doc. F)
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