Essay on Andrew Jackson and the Bank War

2406 Words Dec 6th, 2001 10 Pages
The validity of President Andrew Jackson's response to the Bank War issue has been contradicted by many, but his reasoning was supported by fact and inevitably beneficial to the country. Jackson's primary involvement with the Second Bank of the United States arose during the suggested governmental re-chartering of the institution. It was during this period that the necessity and value of the Bank's services were questioned. The United States government in 1816 chartered the Second Bank of the United States. It had a 20-year charter, which was to expire in 1836. Despite this, the Bank was privately owned and during the age of Jackson, the president was Nicholas Biddle. The Bank was large in comparison to other banks, being …show more content…
Secondly, he also found it unconstitutional that the government was chartering such an institution, thus creating a bank, this right is also not given to the government in the constitution. The Jacksonians were strict constructionists, believing in a strict interpretation of the constitution, which is why he and his ideological followers had such anguish towards the bank on constitutional terms. In addition, the government's acceptance of bank notes for taxes also did not coincide with the Jackson's anti- paper money views.
Evidence of Jackson's anti- Bank views can be found in his veto message, which vetoed the re-charter of the Second Bank.
"It (the Second Bank) enjoys an exclusive privilege of banking under the authority of the General Government, a monopoly of its favor and support, and, as a necessary consequence, almost a monopoly of the foreign and domestic exchange" (Hofstadte 291).
In his veto message, he also makes it a point to discuss how a limited portion of the nation's society is benefiting from the Bank.
"Every monopoly and all exclusive privileges are granted at the expense of the public, which ought to receive a fair equivalent… If our Government must sell monopolies, it would seem to be its duty to take nothing less than their full value, and if gratuities must be made once in fifteen or twenty years let them not
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