With no major political divisions after the War of 1812, a spirit of nationalism spread throughout the United States. This nationalism was symbolized by the warm relationship between citizens and President James Monroe. Regional differences, however, brought an end to what was called the Era of Good Feelings. Sectionalism grew more intense over the issues of slavery and tariffs.
Three strong leaders emerged in Congress, representing the three different regions: Southerner John C. Calhoun supported state sovereignty, Daniel Webster came from the North and favored the Tariff of 1816, and Henry Clay spoke for the interests of the Western states. Clay was known for solving national disputes and helped pass the Missouri Compromise that preserved the balance between slave states and non-slave states. When the Supreme Court became involved in sectional and states’ rights issues, its decisions strengthened the power of national government.
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