Justice John Gomery has rejected demands that he step down as head of the inquiry into the federal sponsorship program.
Gomery acknowledged that comments he made to a reporter before Christmas about the inquiry were "ill advised and inappropriate."
He said it was a result of his inexperience with the media.
"I realize now, with the benefit of hindsight, that it was an error for me to agree to be interviewed by the media," Gomery said in a televised address to the inquiry.
But he said the issue is whether he was biased or had closed his mind.
And he said he was not biased and had not closed his mind, and rejected the application by lawyers for former prime minister Jean Chretien for him to step down.
Gomery has headed the investigation into the funnelling of sponsorship money to Liberal-friendly firms after the 1995 Quebec referendum.