The 1828 Presidential Campaign would be one of the dirtiest in American history. Andrew Jackson, feeling he had been cheated out of the presidency in 1824. Jackson was not someone who you wanted to piss off. Jackson felt in 1824 that JQ Adams and Henry Clay had gotten together with a ‘corrupt bargain”- Clay throwing his support to Adams to give him the presidency. Jackson wasn’t revenge.
Andrew Jackson resigned from the U.S. Senate and put his energies into getting what he thought was his- the presidency in 1828. John Quincy Adams meanwhile had suffered through the four worst years as POTUS that any had ever had to endure. Adams had come into office with a lot of things on the plate. He was big especially on internal improvements and science. From the get go he was at war with Congress. He got nothing from them. His four years were just frustration. Who knows why he even ran again in 1828?
The Democratic-Republicans meanwhile were breaking into two factions. Adams would have the support of the National Republicans. They would support Adams and his Vice-Presidential choice, Secretary of the Treasury- Richard Rush. The National Republicans were the old time Republicans, the wealthy merchant classes. The other faction called themselves “Friends of the Democratic-Republicans”-they would eventually become the Democratic Party. They were made up of ‘the common man” and they supported Andrew Jackson and his Vice-Presidential pick- the current Vice Daddy for John Quincy Adams- John C. Calhoun.
Both Jackson and Adams were sixty-one years of age. In September of 1827 over a full year before the election both Jackson and Adams were nominated for the 1828 presidential nod from their parties. Jackson had an edge in his campaign, he was much better organized around the country.
The 1928 election would also be one where the popular vote became even more important. Only Delaware and South Carolina wouldn’t use the popular vote to select their electors.
The rumors that the Jackson people used on Adams included the following. They said that when Adams was the Minister to Russia that he had been a pimp. That he had offered his wife’s maid to the Czar as a concubine. They said that Adams wife was ‘foreign and mysterious ” [his wife Louisa was English} They accused Adams of being a monarcist and anti-religous because he had travelled on the Sabbath. When Adams had a billiard table and a set of ivory chessmen brought into the White House, they said it was “a gaming table and gambing furnature” And of course they attacked Adams for his friendship with Henry Clay.
The Adams people called Jackson an adulterer, a gambler, a cockfighter, a slave trader, a drunkard, a thief and a liar. They claimed that Jackson had helped Aaron Burr in his conspiracy against the United States in 1806.
The only person who wanted to deal with the issues was JQ Adams himself. He was pro-tariff and for internal improvements. No one was listening though.
The election wouldn’t be close. Jackson won 56 % of the vote against Adams 43.6. Jackson tallied 642,553 votes to Adams 500,897. Jackson won 15 states to Adams 9. In the Electoral College it was Jackson 178 to Adams 83.
These guys did not like one another. It is custom after an election for the candidates to pay a courtesy call on the other. This didn’t happen. John Quincy Adams would also be like his father John. On Jackson’s inauguration day, Adams left town early and didn’t attend. Both Adams are the only POTUS not to attend the inauguration of their successor.