Deals are often made in politics, but are those deals corrupt? After the War of 1812 the Federalist party collapsed and left the U.S. with one party. This time was called the Era of Good Feelings. During this time the Democratic-Republicans were the main party, and in the presidential election of 1824 a corrupt bargain occurred. John Quincy Adams made a deal with Henry Clay to make Adams president and Clay the Secretary of State. Some background information is important to understanding the candidates and how they campaigned at that time. In the end, the results showed that political corruption helped Adams win the presidential election of 1824.
Because of the Hartford Convention, the Federalists collapsed. This led to the triumph of the Democratic-Republicans and the Era of Good Feelings. The Hartford Convention was composed mostly of Federalists who opposed the War of 1812. When the U.S. won the war, it raised the national pride of Americans and lowered the respect of the Federalists who opposed the war. This tarnished the Federalist’s record and brought America into the Era of Good Feelings. The Era of Good Feelings brought a high sense of national and military pride. James Monroe said, “National honor is the highest national property of the highest value,” (James Monroe Quotes). That means that national pride is the most important part of a nation. The Era of Good Feelings increased American expansion and population while also making a better style of life for American citizens. Americans began to celebrate holidays such as the Fourth of July, which not only gave the people a great feeling of military pride, but also brought the nation even closer together. This great feeling resulted in the growth of the country. The Era of Good Feelings caused America to flourish and brought the rise of the Democratic-Republican party and destroyed the Federalist party (Adderson).
In the presidential election of 1824, there were four Democratic-Republican candidates and no Federalist candidate. John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay, and William Harris Crawford were the candidates. John Quincy Adams was disliked by the people and was mocked for his bedraggled appearance. Andrew Jackson was liked by the people and became well known as a war hero. Henry Clay was also liked by the people and soon earned the nickname “The Great Compromiser.” William Harris Crawford was the winner of the unpopular Congressional caucus. Because this system was disliked and thought undemocratic by the people, he was not liked. He suffered a paralytic stroke about a year before the election which weakened him throughout his campaign. Although all the candidates were liked and disliked for various reasons they were all Democratic-Republicans ("The 1824 Election and the "Corrupt Bargain"").
The lack of a Federalist candidate caused people to vote on something other than party affiliation. The candidates made frequent and often incorrect personal attacks at the other...