Taylor, Barbara: Dan White's Resignation
Barbara Taylor: My recollection is the reason that Dan White resigned the Board of Supervisors was because at that time, there were two key things that are different than the way the board is run today. Well first, he was a firefighter and he had to quit his job so he lost his salary. The Board of Supervisors salary was what, seven thousand, nine thousand dollars a year? It was basically a stipend and even back in the late seventies, I don't think you could raise a family on you about nine thousand dollars a year. So he was broke, he was under pressure, he'd had to give up his job as a firefighter, and at the same time he didn't have good relations with the other members of the Board of Supervisors. He seemed to—it was like he ran for office, he'd never run for office before, he hadn't really been involved in city hall politics. He might have been involved in neighborhood politics, but I don't know the Dan White had ever shown his face in city hall before he walked in the door for his swearing in after he was elected. So he was very naïve, he was a Pollyanna, and I think it probably came as a shock to him how the how the world worked at city hall, and you didn't just walk in and everybody do what you want. And instead I think that Dan White found himself at odds with the board over a number of key issues. Whether it was that the consent decree, or whether it was that the youth facility out in his neighborhood. There were a number of things that he just knocked heads with other board members and then that coupled with the fact that he was broke, and under stress, and under pressure, family pressure, financial pressure, he decided to resign.
The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections and Archives, University of the Pacific Library
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Taylor, Barbara, "Taylor, Barbara: Dan White's Resignation" (2011). Moscone Oral Histories. 201.