John Caldwell Calhoun a leading Southern politician from South Carolina during the first half of the 19th century. began his political career as a nationalist and proponent of protective tariffs; later, he was a proponent of free trade, states' rights, limited government, and nullification. Calhoun built his reputation as a political theorist by his redefinition of republicanism to include approval of slavery and minority rights. His redefinition was widely accepted in the South and rejected in the North at the time. His defense of slavery became defunct, but his concept of concurrent majority, whereby a minority has the right to object to or perhaps even veto hostile legislation directed against it, has been incorporated into the American value system.
Daniel Webster He first rose to regional prominence through his defense of New England shipping interests. His increasingly nationalistic views and the effectiveness with which he articulated them led Webster to become one of the most famous orators and influential Whig leaders of the Second Party System. As a leader of the Whig Party, he was one of the nation's most prominent conservatives, leading opposition to Democrat Andrew Jackson and the Democratic party. He was a spokesman for modernization, banking and industry. He was an acknowledged elitist.
Henry Clay was a dominant figure in both the First and Second Party Systems. As a leading war hawk, he favored war with Britain and played a significant role in leading the nation to war in 1812. He was the foremost proponent of the American System, fighting for an increase in tariffs to foster industry in the United States, the use of federal funding to build and maintain infrastructure, and a strong national bank. He opposed the annexation of Texas, fearing it would inject the slavery issue into politics. Clay also opposed the Mexican-American War and the "Manifest Destiny" policy of Democrats, which cost him votes in the close 1844 election.