1828-06-01 - Andrew Jackson
My fellow Americans, the upcoming national elections present a very important choice. We can forge a “true” representative democracy for the first time in history, and be led by our directly elected leaders. Or we can continue to live in an aristocratic republic run by over-educated elitists who are not beholden to the will of the people, but only to themselves. As you all know, three years ago I won the popular vote for President, but was denied the office because of a “corrupt bargain” between the dishonorable Henry Clay and President Adams. The people’s choice was disregarded by the elite in power. As a result, I immediately resigned from the Senate and returned to Tennessee, where the legislature immediately nominated me for President again. I have spent the last three years preparing to right this terrible wrong and take back the people’s power to choose their own leaders. My opponent Mr. Adams dismisses me as a “military chieftain.”
I have fought two wars for this country, and I am proud of it. I think one of the most important qualifications a President should have is a military background. We were invaded by the British only 15 years ago. That enemy is still in the Canadas agitating Indians to attack us, and waiting for another chance to invade. We have foreign enemies at our every border. Don’t forget the Spanish forces just to the south in Florida, and Mexico to the west, and Indians constantly raiding settlements all along the frontiers.
These foreign threats are many and dire, and we need a President who has the experience to defend our nation against them. There are threats to our nation from within as well. The Second National Bank is a threat to our economic well-being. President Adams and Vice-president Clay both support the bank claiming that it provides stability. I say it does great harm to the average American.