CHICAGO — If some state lawmakers have their way, former President Barack Obama’s birthday soon  will be a holiday in Illinois.

Three bills are being debated in the Illinois House and Senate that would honor Obama’s Aug. 4 birthday.

The two House bills would create a legal holiday, which would close state offices and schools the Monday after the former president’s birthday. Businesses would have the option of closing. The Senate bill lays out plans for a commemorative day that would not require any offices to close.

The House bills would create the first new state holiday in 40 years and would be the first time a living president was ever honored with a legal holiday in the state.

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