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Nullification Crisis Essay

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Ali Alfarej

Mrs. Varsos

US History


Nullification Crisis Essay

The Nullification Crisis was one of the most important events that has ever happened in the History of the United States of America. The Nullification crisis was a Constitutional struggle between some states and President Andrew Jackson. The states didn't want to pay the protective tariff that Jackson wanted, and the states claimed the right to "nullify," or declare void the tariff. This would have meant that the states didn't have to pay the tariff. More importantly, it would have meant that the states would have had authority over the federal government in a basic economic matter like the tariff. South Carolina lawmakers passed the Ordinance of Nullification in 1832, which said that the tariffs were invalid in the state and that it wouldn't collect them. It also said that South Carolina would leave the Union and set up its own government if the federal government tried to make it collect the tariffs; this set off the crisis.With this crisis in play, many different set of options were set from different representatives all over America. Many from the south and many from the north talked about the issue and stated what they felt about it. In other words, many people had different points of views with the nullification crisis. And in this case we will be discussing two very different point of views on this specific issue. One from a south carolinian and his negative view of the tariff. And Daniel Webster, A speaker from New Hampshire and Massachusetts. And finally The president of the United States, Andrew Jackson. I will speaking of the three sides and decide which side I mostly agree with in terms of their point of view with the nullification crisis and why.

Senator Robert Haynes,. a speaker from South Carolina, had a very negative view towards the New England and the decision on placing tariffs for the states. In more simpler words, his thesis of his argument was that If the federal government was allowed to in a way “judge” if something was following the constitution, then it will undermine the sovereignty and the independence of the states. He continues to explain his point of view by saying that States have the rights to determine certain issues, and the federal gov should not go beyond the powers granted in the constitution and should respect the powers for the states. He explains this in detail with giving the example that In the view of the southerns the determination of the slavery was an issue and believed it should be left for the states and if u interfere with slavery you interfere with the rights of the states. He is negating the authority of the Supreme Court to decide if the national government has gone beyond its powers he is saying I think it can be implied that the states have equal power with the Supreme Court. He continues to state “ It makes but little difference in my estimation whether congress or the supreme court are invested with this power”. He is basically stating that he does not care if the supreme court or congress looks at it, it is still not sufficient to rake away the rights of the states. He continues on to explain his feelings towards nullification by saying “ brings the states and the people to the feet of the federal government and leaves them nothing they can call their own”. Here he makes a very important concept in saying that by doing by doing things like the nullification and the tariffs. This will only help one part of the country , you are denying all the rights of the individual states. He also states that it is “Unauthorized taxation”. He stays this to specifically recall and bring back the times of the colonies and how the british were taxing them. He is using the same phrase every american citizen is using which was “Taxation Without representation” and he is using thins to attack the north and state that their are against victims of unreasonable taxes. He concludes to bring the idea of succession and explain how “we have the right to say this is not what we bargained for, we wanted a union to help everyone and the scary point is he said we are gonna go back to the colonial days”.

On the other side, stating a more positive view on the nullification. Daniel Webster pleads for the union. Webster defends the new england and the northern union. Webster starts off his very straight forward opinion on nullification by stating “The people but not the states has formed the Constitution”. He expands this point by asking a rhetorical question to describe Is it we the people or is it we the states? The answer of the constitution was it is we the people other wise we would have put in the bill of rights. He explains his point of view more detailed and almost replies to Haynes point of view of the states and how theys hould nullify laws of the federal government. He replies by stating, “A rope of sand and there was a better solution”..... He explains If the states had the power to nullify laws of the federal government It would disempower the federal government because if there was a law (specific rule) if a few states would say they are not following it the federal government would not have any power. Our whole legislative process would be nullified and the whole branch would be negated. Webster continues to bring up another point on national unity. Haynes says in simpler words that National pride can be found in the unity of the national strength in what has been produced and created that includes the whole country, and that is what makes us great. He continues to explain that they were pretty messed up when they started to build this nation from the beginning. America was in heavy debt. Each had different laws for commerce, and their credits were almost completely broken. He brings up a more emotional approach to Haynes point about the south seceding from the north union of America. He states “To hang over the precocious of the union”. In



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