Has a POTUS ever been called for jury duty?

  • Has a POTUS ever been called for jury duty?

    It's everyone's civic duty after all, right?

  • Yep, presidents have been called for jury duty before. Of course they never serve on a jury. 'Running a country' and all is a good excuse.

    Perhaps slightly more comically is that even SCOTUS gets called for jury duty, but they also have a good excuse.

    Trump though shouldn't be at risk of jury duty during his presidency because he just recently served.

    Showing up for jury duty and getting formally excused by the parties or a judge, however, has a lot of symbolic force. I've frequently encountered jurors in jury pools who say they showed up because a governor or SCOTUS judge did too, so they feel its only fair for them to show up.

    @ohwilleke How about "I showed up for jury duty because i didn't want to get arrested for not showing up to jury duty"?

    Surprisingly rarely. Although one jurisdiction in my area (Glendale, Colorado municipal court), does round up and randomly arrest people who were not called to jury off the streets and from their homes to to serve on juries to avoid dismissing cases for speedy trial reasons when an insufficient percentage of those called actually show up a few times every year.

    In addition to the people having a good excuse, I doubt a judge would want the President on a jury since it would turn an otherwise menial case into a media circus and the security implications would be a huge headache.

    What's the expression? "I'm just here so I don't get fined."

    What if the POTUS doesn't want to be excused? He'd have to be challenged not to be a good jury by one of the involved parties, but if they don't complain either (the POTUS being an important person after all, don't upset those), it could happen?

    @Mast In theory it could happen. In practice, no lawyer would ever want him, no judge would ever allow him, no president would ever want to, and the public would go crazy.

    @Mast In a federal court, full-time public officers in any branch of any level of government are barred from jury duty, so the President would not be *allowed* to serve on a federal jury. State court may be different, though.

    As a lawyer Obama would be pretty safe from being selected even if he weren't the president.

    @curiousdannii Lawyers get selected all the time. My father is a lawyer and he just recently served on the jury in a traffic case in Maryland. I sat on a jury for a kidnapping/carjacking/murder case about 2 years ago alongside a defense attorney.

    @RoddyoftheFrozenPeas In Baltimore, lawyers and police officers and anyone involved in criminal cases are excused. It depends on whether a lawyer is involved in cases like the one being tried or in front of the judge trying the case or knows one of the lawyers or police officers involved in the case.

    @sabbahillel Not all lawyers work in criminal law; the case I mentioned was actually in Baltimore. It's all irrelevant anyway, I was just pointing out that a blanket statement like "a president can't be selected if s/he is a lawyer" is not accurate. It wasn't intended to start any sort of extended discussion about nuances about eligibility rules in particular jurisdictions.

    @RoddyoftheFrozenPeas OK you are correct. Blanket statements would need to be explained in more detail.

    @Roddy Must be different in the US than In Australia then. My mistake.

    This answer is mostly link-only, which is usually discouraged because links die all the time. Can you integrate some of the information into your answer? It's basically only saying "yes" right now.

    @BradC In America if you don't show up to jury duty you can get fined or even imprisoned. You are legally obliged to show as it is your civic duty.

    @grovkin This is more of a theoretical legal discussion that realistically will never come close to happening, but I would argue that if the president doesn't not respond to a jury duty summons then that doesn't qualify as in his capacity as president and thus separation doesn't apply. Same reason that if the president shoots someone in the middle of the street then the worst that happens won't be removal from office.

    @grovkin You are 100% mistaken. This is why Nixon was pardoned. Otherwise he would have gotten more than kicked out of office.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM