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Monday, November 2, 2009

Jerry Brown Spokesman Resigns Over Interview-Taping Flap

Posted By on Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 12:35 PM

Scott Gerber, director of communications for California Attorney General Jerry Brown, has resigned after admitting last week that he had secretly recorded conversations with journalists, including a recent telephone conference call with a San Francisco Chronicle reporter.

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Brown's office has released a resignation letter from Gerber, dated today, in which the former head of the AG's press office admits to "serious errors in judgment." He continues, "I suspect that the few reporters involved in the calls I taped would have readily said yes, but nonetheless it was wrong not to ask them first." Gerber states that, "as a result of my actions, I realize that I can no longer effectively serve the Office of the Attorney General."

Last week, the Chronicle reported that Gerber had taped an on-the-record conversation with Chron political reporter Carla Marinucci and two senior staff attorneys from the attorney general's office. While his actions were probably not illegal under state law, they ran counter to the typical protocols followed by both reporters and government spokespeople, and caused an unwelcome scandal for Brown, the current front-runner in the 2010 governor's race.

On Friday, the attorney general's office announced that Gerber had been placed on administrative leave. Brown spokeswoman Christine Gasparac said today that his resignation had been accepted, but would not comment further on the situation.

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