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Ex-Rep. Charles Gubser of California Dies

Former Rep. Charles Gubser died Aug. 20 in Fresno, Calif. He was 95.

The Republican represented San Jose, Calif., and other parts of Santa Clara County during his 11 terms in the House, starting in 1953. He did not run for re-election in 1974, the same year as President Richard Nixon’s resignation.

Gubser was born on Feb. 1, 1916, in Gilroy, Calif. He attended San Jose State Junior College and the University of California at Berkeley before teaching high school and taking up farming.

His political career began in the California State Assembly, where he served one term before he was elected to the House.

During his more than two decades in Congress, Gubser was overshadowed by the news of the day more than once, according to a report from the San Jose Mercury News. When he was contemplating a gubernatorial bid in California, he gave a keynote at the state GOP convention; later that day, Marilyn Monroe’s body was found. He also led a study group to examine the aeronautics and space fields, and the panel released its report on the day that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated.

Gubser did have one particularly notable occasion in the House. During the Vietnam War, he and then-Rep. Tip O’Neill (D-Mass.) wrote legislation that banned anonymous teller votes, which allowed Members to vote via cards without identifying themselves.

Gubser was 58 when he left Congress, spending the next 37 years off the political grid. According to South Valley Obituaries, he moved to Colorado after he retired. He moved to Fresno in 2005 to be closer to his family.

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