Jensen files 2 lawsuits alleging ‘politically-motivated’ investigations

Scott Jensen sues state over free speech violations

Scott Jensen sues state over free speech violations

Former Republican candidate for governor Dr. Scott Jensen says he believes multiple investigations by the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice that threatened his license to practice medicine were “politically motivated” and part of a “weaponization of a government agency.”

The targets of two lawsuits filed Tuesday are the Board of Medical Practice and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. The two lawsuits can be found at the bottom of this article, or by clicking HERE and HERE.

“Between July of 2020 and March of 2023, under the guise of ‘regulating professional conduct,’ the Board systematically launched a series of five ‘investigations’ comprised of 18 complaints and one ‘Conference’ into Dr. Jensen’s license to practice medicine after he engaged in protected political speech related to COVID-19,” according to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court. “According to the BMP itself, every complaint and investigation litigated by the BMP against Dr. Jensen concerned public statements in one form or another, and none of the complaints involved patient care or treatment, nor did any involve speech incidental to a medical procedure. In other words, the Board had no jurisdiction over any of the 18 complaints it received and investigated against Dr. Jensen, with the arguable exception of three.”

At a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Jensen says the board clearly overstepped its authority by investigating instances where he exercised free speech.

“Not one of them that I’m aware of involved a patient who received a health care service from me,” he said Tuesday. “Not one of them represented that critical nexus between a physician and a patient.”

Jensen filed a separate lawsuit in Carver County District Court against Attorney General Ellison.

“Since Dr. Jensen announced that he was running for Governor of Minnesota, (Ellison has) been assisting the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice with politically-motivated investigations into Dr. Jensen’s medical license, based almost entirely on Dr. Jensen’s political speech about the government response to the COVID-19 pandemic and his reasons for opposing that response,” the lawsuit alleges.

Jensen claims when he tried to prove the political motivation, Ellison’s office refused to provide key documents through a public record request. Ellison’s office denies they did not cooperate in providing documents.

“The Attorney General’s Office takes its responsibilities under the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act seriously — and fulfilled them in responding to Dr. Jensen’s data request,” a spokesman for the Attorney General said in a statement released to 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS. “The Office gave Dr. Jensen nearly 1,800 responsive documents. It also withheld other data that fell within categories that the law authorizes the Office to withhold. This lawsuit is without merit and the Office will respond fully in court.” 

The Board of Medical Practice did not respond to a request for comment.

Jensen is seeking monetary damages, including punitive damages, in the federal lawsuit along with “injunctive relief” to prohibit the board from investigating Jensen for exercising free speech rights. In the state lawsuit, Jensen seeks damages, attorney fees and documents that the attorney general has not yet turned over to his attorneys.

“These are not complicated lawsuits,” says Greg Joseph, an attorney representing Jensen. “It’s clear what was done. He was investigated on the basis of speech alone and not on the basis of the practice of medicine.”