Vaccine doubts fuel doctor’s rise in Minnesota governor race

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The small-town family doctor slated to be the next governor of Minnesota smiled, leaned into the camera and told his Facebook audience that Sweden has raised “significant concern” about heart inflammation for people under the age of 30 at Moderna Vaccine. was stopped.

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Dr. Scott Jensen, wearing a white lab coat, turned quickly: “So what happens to military men who are threatened with a humiliating discharge if they are willing to potentially put their heart health at risk? Aren’t you?”

The post quickly racked up thousands of views and favorable comments – testament to Jensen’s early success in tapping conservative anger over the Democratic strategy of trying to vaccinate, mask and social-distance America from the COVID-19 pandemic.


Messages like the video have been a key part of how Jensen, a former state senator with a reputation as a moderate before the pandemic hit, has been among Republicans seeking to remove Democratic Gov. Has emerged as the starting front.

Jensen’s video pulled a warning label from Facebook confirming the safety of the vaccines. Earlier this year, he was temporarily banned from advertising on the site and removed from TikTok for allegedly spreading misinformation, though the social media platform never explained why.

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The Minnesota Board of Medical Practice opened and dropped four investigations against Jenson, based on anonymous allegations that he spread misinformation and gave bad advice about COVID-19. Jensen has discussed the matters on social media but declined to release letters received from the board, whose investigations are not public unless they result in disciplinary action.

Jensen has not been vaccinated against the coronavirus, although he says he will “absolutely” be vaccinated against the coronavirus if he doesn’t already have antibodies from a mild case. (The Centers for Disease Control also recommends vaccination for people who already have the virus.)

Sen. Matt Klein, a Democrat and fellow doctor who knew Jensen in the Legislature, said he was amazed by what he heard from Jensen during the pandemic.

“I’m seeing patients who are actively harming or dying from misinformation,” Klein said.

Jensen, 66, often deviated from Republican conservatism during a term in the Minnesota Senate that ended last year.

He was at least ready to consider gun control legislation, such as universal background checks, and legalizing recreational marijuana. They struck a deal to end a bitter partisan standoff over insulin prices. He took on the industry by winning the enactment of a law to regulate pharmacy profit managers.

As the pandemic took hold, he began to question the federal government’s methodology to determine when the disease should be listed as a cause of death. This launched him on his way to making frequent appearances on Fox News and other conservative media. In May, he was briefly a plaintiff in a lawsuit seeking to block vaccines for 12- to 15-year-olds, filed by Frontline Doctors of America, led by Simone Gould, who was arrested after the January 6 uprising in the US Capitol. was arrested during . Recently, he called for legislation to ban “civil disobedience” and vaccine mandates by employers.

Her busy schedule of campaigns across the state included a slot as a featured speaker at the “Global Health Freedom Summit” in western Minnesota last month. There, he joined a panel discussion with some of the biggest names in the anti-vax world, including some who have pushed the lie that coronavirus vaccines contain microchips that governments can use to track people. can do

Among the thousands who watched his video on Sweden vaccine news was Sheila Dekker of Moorhead, Minnesota, who had met him earlier at a health independence event.

“He’s like a breath of fresh air to me,” Decker said in an interview. “He’s honest, he’s trustworthy.” She said she supports Jensen because she opposes vaccine and mask mandates and doesn’t like how Walz handled the pandemic, including his orders to close restaurants and businesses.

At Jensen’s clinic in Watertown where western Minneapolis suburbs give way to agricultural country, there are no signs encouraging or encouraging patients to wear masks. Exam halls reflect their personality. One is decorated like a North Woods cabin, with log furniture, a potbellied stove, and a purse on the wall. Another has a memento from the “M (asterisk) A (asterisk) S (asterisk) h” TV series, complete with a fake IV bottle on the wall labeled “vodka”.

Klein, who has treated several critically ill COVID-19 patients at Hennepin County Medical Center and Mayo Clinic – and has seen many die – said he was impressed by Jensen’s medical skills when they both met Gov. Dayton arrived to aid when Dayton collapsed during one. Speeches in 2017. He said he considered Jensen “a competent and fairly conscientious doctor” before the pandemic.

But Klein said the positions Jensen is now advocating for are “anti-science and radical.” He said Jensen should know that masks work, that most COVID-19 patients who are hospitalized are not vaccinated, and that being infected with the coronavirus acquires immunity. Not as strong as vaccination.

In an interview with the Associated Press, Jensen admitted to being a “contrarian” but said he is not anti-vaccine or anti-science, a charge often leveled by Democrats.

“I don’t see myself as being ultra-conservative on COVID,” he said. “I see myself as an outspoken skeptic.”

Credit: / Minnesota

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