Turning Back Home

Revised and Reposted; March 2023:

Please Note: In June 2021, Having lost the Democratic Nomination for Tompkins County Legislature, I suspended my campaign for that office.

The primary was on a Tuesday. Two nights later, I spoke to the Newfield Town Board. (Newfield, like southern Enfield, lies in Tompkins County Legislative District #8, now represented by Republican Randy Brown.) At that meeting I not only suspended my campaign for Tompkins County legislature, but also announced my intention to seek re-election as Enfield Town Councilperson in 2023.

It’s now 2023. And indeed I am seeking that second term on the Enfield Town Board. I invite you to read the words I spoke to the Newfield Town Board that June evening. I announced I was turning back home.:


Thursday, June 24, 2021

Good Evening:

In The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost wrote: 

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood,

And looked down one as far as I could…”  (You may remember the rest.)

As a Town Board member myself, I try never to mix partisan politics with governance.  But, please indulge me this one time.  I may make some news tonight.

These past months, I looked down a new road.  I took it for a while.  But this week I found rocks in my path.  I’m turning back now; back home.

Tonight, I’m announcing to this Town Board, to your constituents—and to mine—that I am suspending my campaign for the Tompkins County Legislature.

The voters have spoken. Tuesday, Democrats by a wide margin chose Vanessa Greenlee as my Party’s nominee.  I finished a distant second.  Republicans earlier chose Randy Brown.  Greenlee and Brown deserve to face each other, one-on-one, head-to-head, in November, without confusion.

Greenlee is a principled progressive; Brown a committed conservative.  I, a political centrist, need not complicate matters and muddy the mix with a middle ground candidacy, fracturing the race, drawing away votes from one person or the other; leaving a less-than-decisive outcome with no one winning a majority. Democracy demands better.

I will not be your next County Legislator.  I have suspended my campaign.  I’m retrieving my yard signs.  I’m curtailing canvassing.  I’m stepping aside.

But I will remain on the ballot.  I’ve labored too long, going road-to-road, door-to-door, to surrender those 151 nominating signatures on a whim.  And I would betray the trust of those who’ve signed for me by canceling their preference with my one stroke of a pen.  They have the right to vote for me—should they choose.

A second announcement:  Tonight I announce my intention to seek reelection in 2023 to the Enfield Town Board.   I intend to seek no higher office—now, or in the future.

The road I will take is the one I began two years ago;  only now, with the added wealth of having come to know so many new friends, those of you I’ve met these past months here in Newfield—and that includes you, the members of  this Town Board.  Newfield and Enfield are twin sisters of a sort.  So I will return for regular visits.  When I do, I can learn, and maybe also contribute.

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by…”

And yes, Newfield, that has made all the difference—even though my journey was brief.

Now, I’m turning back.  Back home.  Thanks.

Robert Lynch