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In the election of 1824, numerous candidates contended for the presidency, all members of the Democratic-Republican Party. Andrew Jackson won more popular votes and more votes in the Electoral College than any other candidate. However, because he did not win the majority (more than half) of the available electoral votes, the election was decided by the House of Representatives, as required by the Twelfth Amendment . The Twelfth Amendment limited the House’s choice to the three candidates with the greatest number of electoral votes. Thus, Andrew Jackson, with 99 electoral votes, found himself in competition with only John Quincy Adams, the second place finisher with 84 electoral votes, and William H. Crawford, who had come in third with 41. The fourth-place finisher, Henry Clay, who was no longer in contention, had won 37 electoral votes. Clay strongly disliked Jackson, and his ideas on government support for tariffs and internal improvements were similar to those of Adams. Clay thus gave his support to Adams, who was chosen on the first ballot. Jackson considered the actions of Clay and Adams, the son of the Federalist president John Adams, to be an unjust triumph of supporters of the elite and referred to it as “the corrupt bargain.”

R. R. Stenberg, “Jackson, Buchanan, and the “Corrupt Bargain” Calumny,” The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 58, no. 1 (1934): 61–85.

This marked the beginning of what historians call the Second Party System (the first parties had been the Federalists and the Jeffersonian Republicans), with the splitting of the Democratic-Republicans and the formation of two new political parties. One half, called simply the Democratic Party, was the party of Jackson; it continued to advocate for the common people by championing westward expansion and opposing a national bank. The branch of the Democratic-Republicans that believed that the national government should encourage economic (primarily industrial) development was briefly known as the National Republicans and later became the Whig Party

2009. “Democratic-Republican Party,” In UXL Encyclopedia of U.S. History , eds. Sonia Benson, Daniel E. Brannen, Jr., and Rebecca Valentine. Detroit: UXL, 435–436; “Jacksonian Democracy and Modern America,” http://www.ushistory.org/us/23f.asp (March 6, 2016).
. In the election of 1828, Democrat Andrew Jackson was triumphant. Three times as many people voted in 1828 as had in 1824, and most cast their ballots for him.
Virginia Historical Society. “Elections from 1789–1828.” http://www.vahistorical.org/collections-and-resources/virginia-history-explorer/getting-message-out-presidential-campaign-0 (March 11, 2016).

The formation of the Democratic Party marked an important shift in U.S. politics. Rather than being built largely to coordinate elite behavior, the Democratic Party worked to organize the electorate by taking advantage of state-level laws that had extended suffrage from male property owners to nearly all white men.

William G. Shade. 1983. “The Second Party System.” In Evolution of American Electoral Systems , eds. Paul Kleppner, et al. Westport, CT: Greenwood Pres, 77–111.
This change marked the birth of what is often considered the first modern political party in any democracy in the world.
Jules Witcover. 2003. Party of the People: A History of the Democrats . New York: Random House, 3.
It also dramatically changed the way party politics was, and still is, conducted. For one thing, this new party organization was built to include structures that focused on organizing and mobilizing voters for elections at all levels of government. The party also perfected an existing spoils system, in which support for the party during elections was rewarded with jobs in the government bureaucracy after victory.
Daniel Walker Howe. 2007. What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America, 1815–1848 . New York: Oxford University Press, 330-34.
Many of these positions were given to party bosses and their friends. These men were the leaders of political machine     s , organizations that secured votes for the party’s candidates or supported the party in other ways. Perhaps more importantly, this election-focused organization also sought to maintain power by creating a broader coalition and thereby expanding the range of issues upon which the party was constructed.
Sean Wilentz. 2006. The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln . New York: Norton.

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Source:  OpenStax, American government. OpenStax CNX. Dec 05, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11995/1.15
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