Republican Tom Emmer is defending himself against criticism of two drunken driving arrests that occurred decades ago.
The criticism was directed through his main Republican rival for governor, Marty Seifert. In a letter to Republican activists, a Seifert supporter criticized Emmer for not being forthcoming about his past. She said her husband and son were injured by a drunk driver.
Seifert said the issue is important for delegates to know. Emmer said the arrests, which occurred in 1981 and 1991, are publicly known. He characterized the issue as a desperate attempt by Seifert's campaign.
"Drinking and driving is absolutely wrong," Emmer said. "It's something that there is no excuse. You take responsibility for your decisions in life. You're talking about something a lifetime ago. It doesn't change that it's very important to who I am and I do think it's important for people to know."
Emmer and Seifert are vying for the Republican endorsement for governor. Both say they will drop out of the race if they don't win party backing on April 30.