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California IN BRIEF : SAN FRANCISCO : FBI Kept Files on Unruh for 30 Years

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

The FBI amassed voluminous files on Jesse Unruh, one of California’s most powerful politicians, over three decades in which he served as Speaker of the Assembly, among other posts, and ran for governor against Ronald Reagan. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the dossier on Unruh ran 1,100 pages and included a report from an unidentified woman who believed Unruh was a Communist because of his interest in Jews and black people. The files showed that the FBI interviewed Unruh associates, clipped newspaper articles and catalogued letters from citizens complaining about his liberal politics and his way of life. The FBI said such files were routinely kept on politicians who were considered for appointment to federal offices. Unruh was state treasurer when he died in 1987.


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