Brighten their holiday. Enrich their everyday.Give The Atlantic

Ted Cruz Has to Deal With Jury Duty, Just Like the Rest of Us

But unlike everyone else, he actually goes.

In a show of civic responsibility, Sen. Ted Cruz did Friday what many Americans would do almost anything to avoid: He showed up for jury duty.

The Texas Republican was spotted Friday morning at Houston's Harris County Jury Plaza going through security, posing for photos and, somewhat controversially, wearing white socks. His peers in the selection process—those who recognized him—registered their surprise on Twitter and Instagram.

Although the Senate is in session (but not voting) Friday, Cruz, a former lawyer and Texas solicitor general, told Houston's ABC affiliate, KTRK, that he was "happy to come down and do my civic duty."

"I would certainly encourage everyone else when you get a jury summons to come down to participate," he said. "It's like voting. It's part of the responsibilities of the citizen."

Cruz said it was the first time he'd been summoned. Though he likely won't be selected, the process isn't over yet.

"It would be a bit of a complication if I ended up in a six-week trial," Cruz told reporters. "That would be in some tension with getting back to Washington and doing my job representing Texans. But I think at the end of the day that'll work itself out."

If that doesn't happen, Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett offered the senator and likely presidential contender a piece of advice to avoid selection: Act crazy.

This story was updated to clarify what is happening in the Senate Friday.