Former US president Barack Obama expected to report for jury duty in Illinois next month

 Former US president Barack Obama has been summoned for jury duty in November.
Former US president Barack Obama has been summoned for jury duty in November. PHOTO: REUTERS

CHICAGO (NYTIMES) - First he wore dad jeans. Then he cried after dropping off his older daughter at college. Now, in the latest evidence that some experiences are universal, even for former presidents of the United States, Mr Barack Obama has been summoned for jury duty in Illinois, his home state - and he plans to show up, a court official said.

Mr Timothy C. Evans, chief judge of the Cook County Circuit Court, which includes Chicago, told county commissioners at a meeting Friday (Oct 27) that the former president would appear in November, the Chicago Tribune reported.

"He made it crystal clear to me through his representative that he would carry out his public duty as a citizen and resident of this community," Mr Evans told the Tribune. Mr Obama owns a home in the Kenwood neighborhood of Chicago's South Side.

Mr Evans did not specify the date or location of Mr Obama's expected appearance. The former president could serve as a juror in a civil or criminal trial.

Mr Obama is not the first former president to receive a letter calling on him to carry out this civic duty.

Former President George W. Bush sat through jury selection in 2015 in Texas, although he was not chosen to serve. Former President Bill Clinton also filled out a jury questionnaire for a gang shooting case in federal court in Manhattan in 2003. He was not selected either.

Fame does not mean that being selected is out of the question.

Former Secretary of State John Kerry was selected for a jury in Massachusetts in 2005 and his fellow jurors elected him foreman. Ms Oprah Winfrey, another high-profile Chicagoan, served on a jury in 2004 that convicted a man of murder.

Mr Daniel Wolfe, the senior vice president of the trial consulting firm DecisionQuest, said that given the relative scarcity of celebrities in Chicago and Chicagoans' fondness for the former president, there was a "real possibility" that Mr Obama could be selected to serve.

"They're proud of Obama, and I think they'd be proud to have him serve on their jury," he said.