Skip to main content

Republican Sen. Scott Jensen says he won't stand for re-election

He has represented Carver County since 2016.
Scott Jensen

After just one term in office, Republican Sen. Scott Jensen says he won't be seeking re-election in 2020.

The senator, who represents Carver County, announced his decision on his Facebook page on Sunday, citing the "tenuous balance that life presents."

He says that he wants to spend more time with his wife, children and four – soon to be five – grandchildren, as well as focus more on his work as president of Catalyst Medical Clinic, which has locations in Chaska and Watertown.

Jensen has proven to be one of the few Republican senators willing to work across the aisle with Democrats in recent years, something he noted in his video.

"I'm a citizen legislator, I said that from the beginning. I didn't run to rub elbows with bigwigs. I didn't run to go along and get along.

"I've been willing to engage in discussions on topics that I've never dreamt of, but I felt were important. That's angered some folks, but pleased others."

Those topics include coming out in favor of the full legalization of marijuana in Minnesota, saying he backs it so it can be accessed for medical reasons by those who don't currently qualify under Minnesota's medical marijuana program.

He also joined a group of Senate Democrats last year to call for two gun control bills, one of them closing the "gun show" and private sale loophole, the other requiring gun owners to report missing or stolen firearms.

Sign up for our daily newsletters

He said the decision not to run again was a difficult one that he chewed over with his wife, veterinarian Mary Jensen.

"I asked my wife what's been the most difficult thing for her with regards to my service in the Senate, and she said it really wasn't the lonely nights waiting for me to get home, but probably more that when I was home I was preoccupied, and probably engaged with things other than my family and my practice, and medicine.

""My patients have been clear they would like me to be available to them full time year-round and I get that. There are many chapters in their life that they're walking through and I want to be alongside of them."

Jensen was elected to Senate District 47 in 2016. He is one of four physicians in the Legislature, and the only Republican.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-09-28 at 9.05.52 AM

Able Seedhouse + Brewery in NE Minneapolis to close

The brewery and its onsite food truck, Animales Burger Co., will both be open for their last day on Saturday.

Lake Minnetonka

Police investigate spate of car break-ins on south Lake Minnetonka shore

The South Lake Minnetonka Police Department received reports that cars in Shorewood and Excelsior were broken into Tuesday morning.


1 dead, 3 injured in crash involving tractor and SUV

The man driving the tractor was killed in the crash.

University of minnesota sign

U of M gives some students 50% off meals for September after complaints

Students have complained about an array of issues surrounding dining halls.


Gallery: Sprawling estate near Superior National Forest listed for $2.9M

The property has been in the same family for over 60 years.

Screen Shot 2022-09-27 at 2.51.49 PM

Surgery clinic proposed to replace 111-year-old farmhouse in Eagan

A developer is proposing to transform the remnant farm property.

Hurricane Ian

Why Hurricane Ian could be catastrophic in Florida

Hurricanes are the atmosphere’s biggest show of force and energy, and Hurricane Ian is no exception.


Suspect arrested after man and dog shot on St. Paul's East Side

The shooting happened around 12:45 p.m. Tuesday.


Bemidji police appeal to find missing teenager

Tahlia Poitra was last seen Wednesday.


Crisp & Green owner launches new chain, with 12 MN locations planned

Steele Brands already owns and operates Crisp & Green and Stalk & Spade.


Scott Jensen

Former state Sen. Scott Jensen to announce run for governor

A family physician, Jensen has made a name for himself by opposing COVID measures and suggesting the pandemic was overblown.

Scott Jensen

Dr. Scott Jensen investigated by medical board for spreading COVID-19 misinformation

The state lawmaker went viral earlier in the pandemic due to comments he made about death certificates.

Scott Jensen

Facing misinformation claims, Dr. Scott Jensen states his case on FOX News

He says Gov. Tim Walz is the one who is spreading misinformation.

Screen Shot 2020-09-28 at 9.14.33 AM

Lakeville Sen. Matt Little says he's received death threat ahead of election

Little has spoke out against the extreme language in attack ads during the election campaign.

Senator Jeremy Miller

Sen. Jeremy Miller elected Republican caucus leader, replacing Gazelka

He'll officially be named Senate Majority Leader once the Senate is in session again.

Scott Jensen

Following misinformation claims, Dr. Scott Jensen says medical board's investigation is over

The state lawmaker went viral earlier in the pandemic due to comments he made about death certificates.

Sen. Scott Jensen golfing during hearing

MN Sen. Scott Jensen under fire for golfing during Zoom hearing

He's been accused of "fueling conspiracy theories" about the COVID death toll.