Commissioners of Taxing District of Brownsville v. Loague - 129 U.S. 493 (1889)
U.S. Supreme Court
Commissioners of Taxing District of Brownsville v. Loague, 129 U.S. 493 (1889)
Commissioners of Taxing District of Brownsville v. Loague
Submitted January 4, 1889
Decided March 5, 1889
129 U.S. 493
ERROR TO THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE
Mandamus lies to compel a party to do that which it is his duty to do; but it confers no new authority, and the party to be compelled must have the power to perform the act.
If a petitioner for a writ of mandamus to compel the levy of a tax to pay a debt evidenced by a judgment recovered on coupons of municipal
bonds is obliged to go behind the judgment in order to obtain his remedy, and it appears that the bonds were void and that the municipality was without power to tax to pay them, the principle of res judicata does not apply upon the question of issuing the writ.