Nullification Crisis Essay

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Jennifer Casenave Instructors name Subject April 17, 2012 The Nullification Crisis The nullification crisis of the early 1800’s is significant to our United States history. In 1828 and 1832, the federal government wanted to enforce tariffs that South Carolina citizens thought were unconstitutional. The tariffs would rise from 15 percent to 50 percent all in favor of the northern manufactures. These tariffs became known as Tariffs of Abomination. President Andrew Jackson signed these tariffs into law and the citizens of South Carolina endorsed their states rights with the Ordinance of Nullification. The main characters that played a role in the nullification crisis were President Andrew Jackson and congress vs. Vice President John C. Calhoun and the citizens of South Carolina. Although President Jackson and Calhoun shared office, they were split on the issue of these tariffs. As a South Carolinian, Calhoun realized that the tariffs did not benefit the people of South Carolina so he defended the state rights. To effectively defend state rights, Calhoun resigned as Vice President and became the Senator of South Carolina. This allowed him to advocate for the constitutional rights for the South Carolina people. After his resignation, he drafted a report on the tariff which was called, “Expostion and Protest” in pursuit of defending the economically depressed state. The Tariffs of Abomination forced South Carolina into an economical depression. Congress passed a tariff that raised tariffs to 50 percent which declined South Carolina exports by 25 percent. The main regional difference that affected this crisis was that the southerners believed that the federal government was taxing the southern region to benefit the wealth of the northern manufactures (Schroeder). This was true; the northern manufactures benefitted a net profit of 26 percent (Scruggs).

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