In his first Annual Message to Congress, Jackson recommended eliminating the Electoral College. He also tried to democratize Federal officeholding. Already state machines were being built on patronage, and a New York Senator openly proclaimed "that to the victors belong the spoils . . . ."
Jackson took a milder view. Decrying officeholders who seemed to enjoy life tenure, he believed Government duties could be "so plain and simple" that offices should rotate among deserving applicants.
As national politics polarized around Jackson and his opposition, two parties grew out of the old Republican Party, the Democratic Republicans, or Democrats, adhering to Jackson; and the National Republicans, or Whigs, opposing him.