The influence of the Alien and Sedition Acts on the election of 1800 has become academic folk wisdom, passed down from one law professor to another without much review of the original evidence. Perhaps the voting data provide support for this claim, although I am skeptical. More to the point, I am reasonably certain that contemporary scholars who make this claim are not very familiar with the actual data. It's just a good story that portrays the ratification generation in the best possible light. The only problem is that slavery and race cast a broad shadow on that generation and by not being aware of just how pervasive slavery was in early American politics, we may fundamentally misconstrue the nature of that political regime and our own. Perhaps instead of blithely apologizing for slavery, states and universities ought to look more deeply at the myriad ways in which white supremacy and human bondage structured American political developments that, at first sight, seem to have little to do with the peculiar institution.
Jacksonians before the Civil War justified expansion by asserting the virtues an extended white republic. White persons who moved into the territories were fully protected by the Bill of Rights, in this view, partly because the whole point of expansion was to increase the land available for free white settlement and partly because Jacksonians had other doctrinal means for fencing out non-whites. Put differently, Taney's claim that the constitution follows the flag in Dred Scott was connected to American expansionism as well as American racism and American slavery, but American expansionism was closely connected to American racism and slavery. Putting African-Americans aside, Taney and others had few qualms about the number of native-Americans killed to expand the scope of white liberty. Whig anti-expansionism was often as racist. Expansion was bad, many argued, because expansion increased the number of nonwhites in the United States (and Whigs were not quite [emphasis on "not quite"] as comfortable as Jacksonians with the doctrinal moves necessary to fence persons of color out of citizenship rights).
While Taney’s thought was not all of on[e] piece (whose thought is), his premises were not utterly disconnected. Taney was not simply a racist pro-slavery advocate, he was a Jacksonian racist pro-slavery advocate. How he understood race and slavery was in part structured byJacksonian commitments (Austin Allen's new book is very good on this). (my emphasis)