In the final push before the health insurance deadline the conversation switched from getting Minnesotans to enroll to MNsure interim CEO Scott Leitz's run-in with law enforcement last summer.
MNsure spokeswoman Jenni Bowring-McDonough said Friday that Leitz, 47, faces a DWI charge from last August, WCCO says. He was charged with fourth-degree DWI and two other charges, FOX 9 says, after he was pulled over for driving carelessly in downtown Minneapolis. A preliminary breath test showed he was driving with a 0.18 BAC, which is more than twice the legal limit, the Star Tribune says.
"I consider this one of the biggest mistakes I've ever made," Leitz said in a statement. "It is humiliating and, as with any mistake, I will learn from it and will not repeat it."
The MNsure board of directors knew about the arrest when he became the interim CEO in December, WCCO says. Leitz became the head of MNsure after April Todd-Malmlov abruptly resigned amid criticism over MNsure's website, among other things.
When he became CEO, Leitz vowed transparency and improvements. On Friday, Gov. Mark Dayton and the MNsure board members expressed support for the work he has done with the new exchange program, the Star Tribune says.
"My association with Leitz began after the MNsure board hired him as acting CEO last December," Dayton said in a statement. "From everything I know, Mr. Leitz has provided MNsure with excellent leadership and has greatly improved its services to the people of Minnesota."
MNsure Chairman Brian Beutner and Vice Chairman Peter Benner showed their support for Leitz in a statement, published, in part, by the Star Tribune:
“Since we appointed him in mid-December, MNsure has turned a corner,” Beutner and Benner said in the statement. “Under his leadership the MNsure website has stabilized, the consumer experience has improved and his communication has been open and transparent. We value his leadership as we continue to make progress for Minnesotans.”
If convicted, Leitz could face a $1,000 fine, 90 days in jail or both, the newspaper says.