Senate Ethics Panel Admonishes Senator Burris for Conduct During Contentious Appointment, but Does Not Seek Further Punishment

In a letter of "qualified admonition" to Burris, the panel said it found he had provided "incorrect, inconsistent, misleading or incomplete information" about his appointment.

"While the committee did not find that the evidence before it supported any actionable violation of the law, senators must meet a higher standard of conduct," the panel wrote.

Burris replied: "I am pleased that after numerous investigations, this matter has finally come to a close."

The Senate Select Committee on Ethics has completed its investigation of Sen. Roland Burris, and his office is trumpeting its finding that he committed no "actionable violations of the law." What his press release didn't mention is that the committee also found he had provided "incorrect, inconsistent, misleading or incomplete information" about his appointment to the Senate. Which is senatorese for, "Pants on fire!"

On Nov. 20, 2009,the Senate ethics committee issued a sternly worded rebuke to Mr. Burris, saying he had made misleading and inaccurate statements about the circumstances surrounding his appointment by disgraced Governor Rod Blagojevich. But it made no recommendation for punishment.

Concluding an investigation into whether Mr. Burris lied about his contacts with associates of the governor, who was later forced from office, the panel issued Mr. Burris a letter of admonishment and said he had been less than candid in his statements and had an inappropriate telephone call with the governor's brother, Robert.