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Originally a lawyer working on frontier cases across British America, Claiborne moved to New Orleans following the British capture of it. Claiborne did not agree with most of Governor-General Andrew Jackson's policies. Claiborne created the Whig Party, which supported the supremacy of parliament over the Governor-General, civil rights, modernization, and the end of slavery.
The Whig Party defeated Jackson's Democratic Party in the 1840 election, and Clairborne became the new Governor-General. Under his rule, slavery was abolished and the relocation of Native Americans ended. Louisiana continued to expand west and became a strong colony. Claiborne decided to end his political career in 1845, due to failing health. In 1848 he passed away in New Orleans.
Today, the Whig Party continues to be a major political party, and Claiborne is regarded as a Founding Father of Louisiana.