Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Lenett: Manno Lying About Ethics... Again

Senator Mike Lenett (D-19) is accusing challenger Roger Manno of using a statement by the General Assembly's Ethics Counsel to "cover up" his filing of "false financial reports" with the State Ethics Commission. Following is Lenett's press release.

September 8, 2010


Manno’s Misuse of “Advice” Aimed to Continue His Cover-Up

Dear Friends,

Earlier today, Delegate Roger Manno issued a release that sought to use an Ethics Counsel’s “advice” as proof that I had made “false accusations” concerning Manno’s failure to disclose his ties to the Wall Street investment firm Lehman Brothers. When Delegate Manno accused me of making “false accusations,” he was lying. Again.

Manno misused the advice he received from the General Assembly’s Ethics Counsel. The Ethics Counsel merely gave advice to Delegate Manno assuming that what he was telling him was true. He did not find that my accusations were false. Quite the contrary.

But that apparently did not stop Delegate Manno. By attempting to sweep this matter under the rug by involving the Legislature’s Ethics Counsel, Delegate Manno has continued his cover-up. He could have chosen this opportunity to come clean, but instead, he attempted a ruse that he hoped would end the matter. And once again, when he was caught, he tried to accuse me.

After the Ethics Counsel found out about Delegate Manno’s release today, he issued a supplemental statement that clarifies his role and confirms the truth – that Manno did, in fact, file false financial reports with the State Ethics Commission:

September 8, 2010

The Honorable Mike Lenett
Room 202 James Office Building
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Dear Senator Lenett:

I am writing in response to your request that I provide the background of my statement to Delegate Roger Manno on September 7, 2010.

When a legislator asks me for a statement to help him or her respond to an accusation of wrongdoing, the statement is not as a binding legal opinion. The advice that I provided to Delegate Manno was based on the delegate’s statements to me, the history of our previous consultations, a question that I addressed to the staff of the State Ethics Commission, and the records available in the files of the Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics. I did not conduct an investigation of the assertions made by you or him. I was acting in my capacity as Ethics Advisor to the General Assembly and not on behalf of the Joint Ethics Committee or the State Ethics Commission.

You are correct in stating that Delegate Manno filed incomplete ethics reports with the State Ethics Commission.


William G. Somerville
Ethics Advisor to the General Assembly
As hard as he tries, Roger Manno cannot change the facts. He lied under oath to the State Ethics Commission for 4 consecutive years. He’s been caught, and yet he’s still lying about it.

Please examine the actual documentation yourself at Who is telling the truth? I invite you to judge for yourself.