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Nullifier Party

John Calhoun, creator of the party

Rembrandt Peale, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The Nullifier party was created in 1828 by then incumbent vice president John Calhoun. It was a pro-slavery and states' rights party.


The party was created in 1828 by John Calhoun, with the ideals of the party being outlined in what is now known as Calhoun's Exposition in December of the same year. The writing was originally made as a reaction to the Tariff of 1828 signed by president John Quincy Adams, which opponents called the 'Tariff of Abominations'. The party would also later target Adam's successor, Andrew Jackson. The party was mostly only ran in South Carolina.


The party leaned in favor of slavery and states' rights. It also believed in nullification, an idea which gave states the power to invalidate certain federal laws if they were interpreted as unconstitutional.


The Nullification party only truly ran in one election, the 1832 election, in which John Floyd received 11 electoral votes from South Carolina, though no popular vote was recorded due to the state not yet electing presidents based on popular vote. After that, most members of the party would leave to join the new Whig party, which comprised of almost everyone who disliked President Jackson. Most of the Nullification members who joined the Whigs would then join the Democrats after Jackson's presidency ended. Officially, the party disbanded in 1839.

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