Biddle was financially savvy but ultimately politically inept. As Biddle was growing in financial stature, his future nemesis, General Andrew Jackson, was growing in political stature. Biddle took over just before the 1824 presidential election in which John Quincy Adams replaced James Monroe as president. It was a controversial election in which Jackson thought he had been robbed of a rightful victory in the House of Representatives by a coalition of supporters of Adams and Henry Clay. Jackson was a hard-money man who strongly distrusted banks, paper currency, and government deficits. Jackson styled himself the outsider. Biddle and his friends were insiders. John Steele Gordon wrote: "By the time Biddle became president, most of the animosity against the bank had disappeared, thanks to economic recovery and sound policy on the part of the bank. It was not an issue in the presidential campaign of 1824 - when Jackson won a plurality of the popular vote, but lost in the House of Representatives to John Quincy Adams - or in 1828, when Jackson exacted revenge by winning a smashing victory over the unpopular Adams. Biddle voted for Jackson in both elections." 20 Jackson represented a new wave of populist politics. Biddle stood for the power of the elite and financial stability. Biddle was the enemy. Historian Jenny B. Wahl wrote: "Leery of the Bank's size, wealth, and power, Jackson also mistrusted any form of money other than gold or silver." 21
Politically, Jackson had calculated correctly. Biddle had calculated badly. Jackson had done a far better job defining the economic and political situation than Biddle could or would. Unhappy Americans understood the impact of Biddle's policies even if they did not understand his principles. Historian Sean Wilentz wrote: "Infuriated by the Bank's continued contraction of credit, business leaders from New York and Boston demanded over the spring and summer of 1834 that Biddle relent lest they repudiate him publicly and bring fully to light how his policies were harming the nation. Finally, in mid-September, Biddle gave way, resuming the Bank's lending, halting the so-called Biddle Panic, and ending his effort to for Jackson's hand."
Vice-President Chester Arthur became the next leader
Woodrow Wilson wrote that Jackson's considered his reelection "a deliberate verdict against the Bank,—a command to destroy it; and its fate was sealed. The President proceeded with characteristic promptness and directness. He first turned to Congress (December, 1832), the very Congress which had passed the vetoed bill, and asked for an investigation, to ascertain whether it was still safe to leave the deposits of the government with the Bank, in view of its mismanagement and probable insolvency. No one but General Jackson and a handful of politicians about him seriously questioned the good management of the Bank or for a moment doubted its solvency, even then, with its charter evidently doomed; and the House very emphatically declared that in its opinion the deposits were safe. General Jackson, accordingly, determined to act without Congress and on his own responsibility. He resolved that the Bank should no longer be given the custody of the public funds." Wilson wrote of the Cabinet shakeup that Jackson's plan required: