Now in fact history does have quite a bit to say about the matter. When the United States won its independence from Britain, the constitution that was signed in Philadelphia in 1787 established a form of government that was not, and did not pretend to be, democratic. It was an aristocratic republic, of a type familiar in European political history: the government was elected by ballot, but the right to vote was restricted to those white male citizens who owned a significant amount of property—the amount varied from state to state, like almost everything else in the constitution, but it was high enough that only 10-15% of the population had the right to participate in elections.
What broke the grip of the old colonial aristocracy on the American political system, and launched the nation on a trajectory toward universal adult suffrage, was the emergence of the modern political party. In America, at least—the same process took place in Britain and several other countries around the same time—the major figure in that emergence was Andrew Jackson, who seized control of one large fragment of the disintegrating Democratic-Republican party in 1828, transformed it into the first successful political mass movement in American history, and rode it into the White House. Central to Jackson’s strategy was support for state legislation extending the right to vote to all white male citizens; in order to make that support effective, the newly minted Democratic Party had to organize right down to the neighborhood level; in order to make the neighborhood organizations attract potential members, the party had to give them an active role in choosing candidates and policies.http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.jp/2012/08/the-degeneration-of-politics.html