Facts. Marbury (P) and others were appointed justices of the peace for the District of Columbia by President Adams and confirmed by the Senate on Adams’ last day as president. The new president, Jefferson, instructed his Sec. of State, James Madison, not to deliver these signed commissions. P brought a writ of mandamus (a writ issued by a superior court to compel a lower court or a gov’t officer to perform mandatory or purely ministerial duties correctly) directly to the Supreme Court under the §13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789, which established United States courts and authorized the Supreme Court to issue writs of mandamus to public officers.
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