Blejer, David

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BLEJER, DAVID (1913–1997), Argentine lawyer and politician. Blejer, the son of Jewish colonists in the province of Entre Ríos, was born in Buenos Aires.

He graduated as a lawyer from the University of La Plata and settled in Villaguay in the province of Entre Ríos. He became active in politics and before reaching the age of 30 was elected as councilor of the city.

He was a legal adviser to the Argentine Agrarian Institute and lectured on agrarian economics. He joined the Unión Cívica Radical Party in 1930. In 1956, when the party divided over internal conflicts, Blejer aligned himself with the Unión Cívica Radical Intransigente, which was led by Arturo Frondizi who was elected president of Argentina (1958–62). In 1958 Blejer was appointed undersecretary of the Ministry of the Interior and in 1959 minister of labor and social security. It was the first time in the history of Argentina that a Jew had become a member of the presidential cabinet. Afterwards he served as ambassador to Mexico. In 1961 he was named chairman of the Instituto Indigenista Interamericano and head of the official delegation of Argentina to the conference of the International Labor Organization. Blejer also published humoristic essays under the pseudonym Julio Mocoroa.

[Efraim Zadoff (2nd ed.)]